Few drinks transport the taste buds beyond the length of the bar from which it was received, even if that bar is New York City’s longest bar at 118.5 feet. Oscar Wilde NYC (at 45 West 27th Street) demonstrates Victorian Era opulence, not only in its cornucopia of period artifacts that pepper nearly all the free wall space, but also in its intoxicating specialty drink selection. We chose for this week’s First Round Friday to profile “Oscar Wilde Potent Elixir.” This aromatic spirit transports those taste buds back in time to the drawing room of the posh Dublin home where Oscar Wilde grew up, along the signature of his famous writing career, and ending with a twist of sophistication and debauchery--and lavender bitters. We've never tasted lavender bitters before but we couldn't resist. As Oscar once said, "I can resist anything, except temptation."
Oscar Wilde Potent Elixir
1 ounce Prunier Cognac
1 ounce Plymouth Gin
1 ounce Guinness Syrup
.5 ounce Lejay Cassis
3 Dash of Lavender Bitters
Top with Champagne, add Lemon Spiral
First Round Friday - feature drink for August 4, 2017
In Woodhaven, NY an historic landmark was three days from being turned into a Bodega when owner Loycent Gordon saved it from such a banal fate. Debated as the oldest tavern in New York City, Neir’s retains an old world charm and pays homage to its roots through its décor and through the tales told as regulars belly up to the bar. The wood flooring has been scuffed by history’s foot soles, and the bar has been smoothed by the countless elbows of patrons drowning their sorrows and celebrating their joys. Peering down from one of the walls in the tavern is a near life-size poster of Mae West (I would say life-size, but wasn’t she bigger than life?). Mae West was a resident of Woodhaven, and performed for the first time at Neir Hall (now Neir’s Tavern). In her honor, Neir’s has created a drink called Mae West Punch. Like Ms. West herself, its sweet at first, then hits you when you least expect it.
Neir’s (site for some scenes from the movie Goodfellas) has graciously shared the recipe below.
If you choose this drink as your First Round, remember this quotation from Mae West herself,
“I'll try anything once, twice if I like it, three times to make sure,” and order it for the next two rounds as well.
Mae West Punch
1½ oz. each of vodka, rum, and gin
A splash of grenadine
Topped with Red Bull