Dining Out: Martinis I have known.

Lately I have been on a martini kick- girly foo-foo ones with flavored liqueurs, fruit and all sorts of nonsense. Loves me some martini. We’re on a first name basis, you see: I call it a “mart”.

When the cherry blossoms bloom a young man’s thoughts may very well be turning to love, but a young woman’s thoughts are definitely heading for cocktails.

At least that’s what this young woman thought when she saw that Chef Geoff’s had a Chocolate Covered Cherry martini. They knew what they were doing when they created that- in fact the bartender who created it was a woman. Can’t really pass that one up, can you now?

So I sent out an Evite to a few lady friends to set up a little girl date at the downtown location across from the Warner Theater. Where they apparently have a Happy Hour that includes “Supermugs”. What is this beast you ask? Simple- 34 ounces of beer in a very large glass mug for a mere $7.95. No, that was not a typo. 34 oz. That comes out to about 4 regular beers and that is darn good, considering that you have 12 beers on tap to choose from and they are goooood.

If you don’t like beer, then let’s get back to that martini, shall we?

We had a table full of ladies, one who had not had a martini ever before in her young life and was quickly indoctrinated. It was lovely- there was Godiva liqueur, there was cream, there was black cherry vodka, there was a cherry. But it was not covered in chocolate, unless you consider the martini concoction itself the chocolate. Which, I’m sorry, I don’t. On the other hand, a sodden chocolate covered cherry squatting malevolently in the bottom of my glass would have been really… off putting.

But the company was good, and the food delicious, so I will pledge my allegiance to Chef Geoff’s forever more. Amen.

But sometimes a girl wants just one flavor crowding her palate, which is why I am also drawn to places like Blue Gin, where they specialize in martinis. Nothing wimpy here, they are all vodka (or gin if you prefer)- the vermouth is an afterthought. A mere spritz as of the finest eau de toilette.

Blue Gin’s bartenders satisfy the urge for fruit and foo with martinis made of fruit purees and garnished with berries and such exotics as starfruits. The martinis are delicious, but they weigh in at $11-$13 which makes them lethal. Why? Well because you get to the end of your evening and that bar tab is in front of you and suddenly you are adding too many zeros and the bartender is getting a $10 tip on a $24 bill. Yikes.

The decor is fab, they don’t start serving until 9pm- not to worry because there are plenty of places to choose from with Third Edition’s Tiki Alley next door and J. Paul’s brew pub down the street.

Blue Gin has djs some nights, and best of all it is tucked away in the alley next to the Banana Republic as you go up Wisconsin away from the waterfront- where no one can find it but you.

Note: Me from the future (SPOOOOOKY!) with the sad news that Blue Gin is closed. Don’t know when it happened, sadly.

This post has been brought to you by Liz, who likes you very much!

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