No matter what night of the week it is, in-house mixologist Orson Salicetti is a draw for people who follow cocktail culture. The former Apothéke mastermind has created two cocktail menus. The first features recipes that are billed as ?Prohibition-inspired? but in many cases, have even older origins. Stripped-down, flawless versions of the Negroni, the Sidecar and the Mint Julep represent the classics, while the Metropolitan (vodka, cranberry, black currant liqueur, agave and lime) and the Chamomile Sour (vodka, ginger, Combier, lime and sparkling wine) have a more contemporary flavor profile.
The second menu reinvents the classics with cutting-edge ingredients and inspired flavors that somehow all make sense. You can journey from sour (the Americano Sour, made with Campari, Antica Carpano, sage, pink peppercorn, grapefruit and soda) to creamy-sweet (Pisco Grasshopper, made with vanilla ice cream, Pisco, mint and cocoa powder). Or you can do fruity – and for this, there are quite a few options, the most straightforward being the Beauty Leaf (tangerine, vodka, Yellow Chartreuse, agave nectar and lime).
Visually, EVR is a glossily handsome, contemporary space that doesn’t reveal its actual size until you get past the downstairs bar. The secretive space requires a knowledgeable guide for unveiling the venue’s best views (from the mezzanine) or discovering the rotating exhibit of pop and modern art, which may remain unfound without a familiar docent. EVR is fully engaged in that early-opening phase, trying to figure out the pieces of its identity—what nights work the best for events and whether it’s a late-night place or an after-work watering hole, or both. Right now, it’s trying a little bit of everything, which makes for a fun, unpredictable vibe.
In late February the venue rolled out a weekday happy hour and opened the “mixology bar-within-a-bar,” LIFT, supposedly found at mezzanine level where Salicetti’s second menu of specialty drinks is available. However, during our last visit we found the Art of Mixology action taking place at ground level, while the other spaces, particularly upstairs, took on a more “loungy” feeling. EVR has energy, feels happening and is to be commended for its eclectic offerings and crowd. It’s not a matter of finding out where the party is at EVR, it’s just the sense that there’s more than one and your challenge is to figure out which one is yours.
Lena Katz is the author of the Travel Temptations series (SIP, SUN, SNOW), published by Globe Pequot Press in 2009. Lena is also a travel expert for Celebrations/1800FLOWERS and WEtv (online and on-air). She contributes to the South China Morning Post and ABC News online. Lena is a former Orbitz Travel blogger and former columnist for the LA Times. She's been published in Brides Magazine, Robb Rep...(Read More)