Thursday, March 15, 2012


And as if to get this whole cocktail thing out of my system, I just read a piece from last Sunday’s LA Times travel section titled “Chicago, that tippling town.”  In the piece, Krista Simmons, a self-proclaimed “native Angeleno” describes a boozy visit to the Windy City, the highlight of which, at least for fans of the culinary absurd, is a visit to the Aviary.

She writes, “The Aviary flips the traditional tasting menu on its head. Here, cocktails take center stage: They're served with nibbles that complement the drinks' flavor profiles. During the seven-course degustation, sips were sent out in architecturally inspired glassware. Ginger-spiked apple brandy cider arrived in a metal-lined glass canteen. Shortly after, a rocks glass encased by a plastic pillow was placed on my table, then cut open, sending forth a cloud of lavender-scented vapors. Then came a warm Rooibos tea cocktail (the Rooibos tea leaf hails from Africa) delivered in a coffee siphon. Using that device's vacuum pressure, the drink's gin and maraschino components were infused with flavors from lavender, citrus, cinnamon and the tea leaves.”

She describes the experience as “highfalutin'.”  Oh how I wish that she, or I, was making this up.  


  1. You're not a fan of the Grant Achatz?

  2. Lydia, well I only know what I hear. A man whose opinion I don't in anyway trust tells me that Alinea is his favorite restaurant in the whole world. But this cocktail tasting menu just sounds insufferable. The Achatz-Mariani wars certainly added to the gaiety of the nation.