Last night I celebrated my birthday with a few of my buddies at Roger Room in West Hollywood with my fave mixologist, Damian Windsor. While there he gave us sneaky sips of the new cocktails that will debut tomorrow on the updated “Also” cocktail menu, a supplement to the regular 21-drink menu. Roger Room prints a new “Also” menu with five drinks about every three months for the new season to showcase “the new things they’re into” as well as seasonal fruit.
Here are the new drinks for your consideration. Damian created all of them except the Star Strega Swizzle which came from Jason Bran:
- Algonquin ($13): Pikesville Rye, pineapple juice, pineapple syrup, Dry Vermouth, served up
- Let’s Get Lost ($14): Tres Reyes Blanco Tequila, lime juice, agave nectar, cucumber, mint, on the rocks
- Pisco Punch ($14): Gran Sierpe Pisco, Mata Hari Absinthe, lime juice, pineapple syrup, pineapple juice, crushed grapes, served over crushed ice
- Star Strega Swizzle ($14): Starr Rum, Liquore Strega, Velvet Falernum, passion fruit, lemon juice, cracked clove, served over crushed ice
- Stranger Than Paradise ($14): Plymouth Gin, lemon juice, egg white, absinthe mist, crushed strawberry, served up
I’ve only had the Algonquin and a few sips of the Stranger Than Paradise. The Algonquin, a classic cocktail created at the Algonquin Hotel in New York back during the Vicious Circle days, is surprisingly not sweet despite the use of both pineapple juice and pineapple syrup. (The syrup is the only difference from the original recipe.) The rye and the Dry Vermouth smooth out the sweetness nicely making this a very delightful, drinkable concoction for a warm evening.
The Stranger Than Paradise was a popular drink among my friends who ordered it, loving it for its combination of the summery strawberries with that hint of absinthe and mmm, Plymouth Gin. So very light and yet potent.
And since we were on a gin kick, we went back to the regular menu. Now usually I stick to my fave cocktail, Thug, which is a spicy whiskey drink, and really haven’t explored the other cocktails made with other spirits even though there is a nice spread. So I was delighted to find a new fave on the menu: Cad, which is made with gin, coffee liqueur and lemon juice. Frickin’ awesome. Like no other coffee cocktail I’ve had before where the coffee flavor is usually overpowering and the sweetness is darn near syrupy. The gin and lemon juice softened the sweet coffee flavor here. Problem is that it’s too drinkable, as I put it away right quick. Before I knew it, aww, all gone. I believe this was the big hit of the evening as we each ordered one.
In any case, if you go to Roger Room to check out the menu for yourself and see Damian behind the bar, blow him a kiss for me, will ya?
The Roger Room_
_ _370 N La Cienega Boulevard_
_West Hollywood, California 90048 (map)_
_Hours: 6pm-2am daily_