Though my plan was to have a quick dinner at Zoya and a single drink at Absinthe before heading home, by the time I looked down at my watch, I realized it had been almost three hours and my one cocktail had turned into five.
But it's OK... May 6 (today) is the 200th anniversary of the first published cocktail recipe, and Absinthe was celebrating the momentous occasion with four fantastic cocktails priced at $6 (Sazerac, Old Fashioned, Martini and a Brandy Crusta).
I started out with a Martinez, possibly the precursor of the Martini, this drink was based on Plymouth Gin, modified with orange bitters, an olive and vermouth. The staff mixed it perfectly, and it transported me back to the early 1930s to the heady days when men (and women) knew how to mix and drink a classic cocktail.
The Martinez was followed by an amazing Sazerac - though it was not as good as those from the actual Sazerac Bar in New Orleans, still it was a great cocktail, blending Rye Whiskey, Herbsaint (an Anisette), Peychaud Bitters, sugar and lemon. I like a little more Herbsaint in my Sazerac, but all in all, it was a fitting tribute to the great 200 year old cocktail from New Orleans.
Next was a classic martini - not a modern martini made with vodka and a whisper of vermouth, but instead a gutsy blend of Plymouth Gin and Noilly Prat white vermouth at a ratio of 3:1.
From there, I moved to a well made Plymouth Gin based Aviation (marischino liqueur and a lime twist) and an orangy Pegu Cocktail.
As classic cocktails go, the weekend team at Absinthe is hard to beat.