Unfortunately, I'm going to break my recap down into two posts. Post one will cover Friday. Post B will cover Saturday and Sunday.
Wow. That pretty much sums up our trip to the Big Apple. Before I get to my recap for you folks, I would like to send a hearty THANK YOU to our friend Ed and his gorgeous fiance Francois. Thanks to their hospitality, the Scofflaw's trip was much more financially feasible. Now if we can just get them some drinking glasses . . .
Anyway, our trip started on Friday. We had an early morning Amtrak train from DC to Penn Station. As Sean has mentioned, we splurged for business class . . . definitely the way to travel! I had to have a cocktail for the trip and deciding on what was a bit difficult. I really didn't want to do the Irish coffee route nor did I want to simple take a bottle of booze. What I decided on was a bottled cocktail. I found the instructions here
. It is a really interesting read because it shows the importance of ice. In short, if you are making bottled cocktails, you need to figure in a certain amount of water because the water from the melted ice when you shake or stir will not be present in the bottled cocktail. Anyway, I realized that I had way too much applejack and quite honestly, it was taking up valuable liquor cabinet space. After searching for an appropriate drink, I settled on one found from CocktailDB
- an A.J. Cocktail. The drink is comprised of 1.5 oz each of applejack and grapefruit juice and .50 oz of grenadine. Using the formula Bar Mix Master's site, I had a great bottled cocktail.
Sean has already wrote about Brother Jimmy's
and my chopped brisket sandwich was very good (basically the burnt tips of the brisket!) After lunch, we headed to the West side and dropped our stuff off at Ed's. We rested a bit and then decided hit our first stop. DEATH & COMPANY!!!!
Now I've read a lot about this bar and was chomping at the bit to have a drink - or three - there. I knew they opened at 6pm so we left Ed's with plenty of time to find the place. One of the interesting aspects of D&C is that they are very low key. The bar is in a residential neighborhood and they don't have a ton of signage advertising they are there. The plaque on the door and the front mat is all they need.
We walked in to the dark interior and took our seats at the bar. Philip Ward, the head bartender, was our bartender for the evening. I ordered a Cocktail de la Louisiane first which was fantastic. Now here is where Sean's and my recap will differ. He was smart enough to at least twitter what drinks we had when we had them. When it came to my next drink, I told Phil that it was bartenders choice, but that I would like to try the Cynar
- an herbal liqueur with a base of artichoke. He asked some guiding questions, such as whether I wanted sweet or sour and what spirit was my favorite (bourbon or rye). He exclaimed that it was an easy choice and handed me a Cynartown. Quite frankly it was delicious, sweet and herby with a bit of a licorice-y undertone. I then ordered a China Fizz and a Buffalo Soldier. The Buffalo Soldier used a candied pecan Buffalo Trace bourbon and came with a side of candied pecans. WOW!
Our conversations with Phil were great. He seemed generally interested in our little website and what we are writing about. We talked about various cocktail related minutia and he even poured me a gratis hefty ounce the Anchor Distilling Genever Gin. Very nice of him and completely unwarranted, but that's the way these guys do business. Sean mentioned how we missed our opportunity to get on the list of Milk and Honey
but we just didn't know who the guy was at the time. Maybe before one of our next trips we can try and reach out to some of the cocktail folks work out an invitation. Who knows until you try, right?!?! I could have stayed at Death and Company all night. I really wanted to. But alas, food and another stop had to be made. As Sean said earlier, on the next trip, I can see myself planted at the bar at Death & Co. for an entire evening.
We bid our farewells and headed to Elattaria
for some grub and some good cocktails. Phil had suggested Elattaria and I had read about them, and they had been suggested by folks on eGullet
, and had them on the preliminary list of places to go. It was a great surprise to be able to hit one of the spots that were not in the top four and for reasons that became evident on Saturday night, it turned out fortune was truly shining on us.
We sat at the bar in Elattaria and our server was Lynnette. The bar was a pretty busy place Friday night, but Lynnette was kind, attentive and during her slower periods would come over and chat us up.
One of the hallmarks of the Elattaria bar is their focus on fresh tiki drinks. And you know how I love me some tiki! We'll Lynnette and I had some really good discussions on tiki drinks. It was awesome. While there I drank a Mai Tai, an 8th Wonder and an Aviation. We needed to eat and Philip suggested the lamb sausage. So of course we ordered some lamb sausage. We also ate stuffed pigs feet and the fried veal sweet breads. Now if you don't know what sweet breads are - go google it. I'll wait. Are you back? Yes, we had fried veal sweet breads.
Not only was Lynnette very personable, so was many of the drinkers. We talked to a nice gentleman who was planning an elaborate dinner/bounty hunt for his girlfriend/fiance and some very attractive Asian women. All seemed really interested in our website and the fact that we wrote about cocktails. Maybe it was the booze talking, but I really felt like this little site of ours was of interest to a lot of these strangers. Seriously, if we met you during our trip to NYC, leave us a comment and an email, we would love to buy you a drink if you're ever in DC!!!
Anyway, back to Elattaria. I felt like the evening was coming to a close so I excused myself to hit the head. When I arrived back at my bar stool, I had this huge glass sitting there. Turns out, Lynnette had poured me a Navy Grog (using the 1941 recipe) on the house. WOW! It was delicious and just the right tone for me to end the night. And after that, we paid our tab and decided to head back to Ed's.
We tried to get a cab, which turns out to be impossibly in that part of Manhattan, so we ended up taking the subway back to Ed's. We stayed up talking to Ed and Franny for a bit, then I had had enough. Time to pass out and dream about the next day . . . .
(Tomorrow's episode - Aquavit, Modern, MoMA, Pegu Club, Tailor and attempting PDT)