Thursday, January 8, 2009

Dear Pearl: I Still Do Like You

Dear Pearl,

Before I say all this, I have to say that I really do like you. I’ve written about you and your unique list of modern tropical drinks in the past. And I still like your spacious layouts, with three bars and all types of nooks, high tables, tall stools and soft, velvet cushions. Your happy hours are so pleasant—the discount drinks and appetizers, the easy accent lighting. Your staff is even kind and friendly. And, of course, your drinks were a delight, especially your old-fashioned.

But this last occasion something felt off. It all started when I ordered this first drink:

The Cherry Manhattan

Ingredients: Phillips Union cherry whiskey, sweet vermouth, two dashes of bitters, and a splash of cherry herring.

It looked pretty, up in a martini glass, all red and glossy. But it tasted like medicine! More syrupy than fluid. So sweet and no earthy whiskey.

And then I ordered:

Papa Doubles

Ingredients: 10 cane rum, Luxardo maraschino liqueur, rock candy syrup, fresh grapefruit and lime.

Luxardo is one of my favorites, so I splurged and reached for this second drink, supposedly a Cuban daiquiri, according to the menu! But it was too thick, weighed down by muddled grapefruit and lots of syrup. It tasted like concentrated juice.

Alas, perhaps myself is to blame for not sitting at the bar. I do have to say, though, that your food was stupendous. My friend Phil ordered Kobe beef and seared ahi. The tender beef arrived on a tall stack of wide potatoes, fried just right so that they were crunchy on the exterior and fluffy on the inside.

The ahi was so fresh, too, and sauce was just amazing! Not too fishy. Firm and not mushy.

In the end, I still respect you, Pearl. And I do plan to return another happy hour some day. Your environment is just so comfy, and my friend experience was so wonderful. But perhaps I may not order these specific drinks.



No comments: