Approaching the rum bar tipping point
Put me down as a fan of bars with tunnel vision. Highly specialized bars offer superior education, a deep-dive for enthusiasts past the Mixology 101 mark, and an outlet for pricey or cult spirits.
But specialization invites certain economic realities. “A little speakeasy with 16 seats is great, but I’m sorry to say that you’ll never make a living,” Dale DeGroff told G-LO via DrinkWire.
Thus I marvel at the saturation of spirit-specific bars in San Francisco — specifically rum bars. Continue reading
Also, Gib’s is one of the best cocktail spots in Madison, Wisconsin.
Gib’s is in a house. It’s a very east side thing.
Gib’s cocktail menu, late January 2017.
77 Kelvin: shattered herbs (frozen with nitro or dry ice), Leatherbee gin, lime.
Boozy Cola: Rum, Fernet, Sassafras, served with a cola bottle.
Old-Fashioned: Maison Rouge cognac VS, Evan Williams, bitters, citrus cordial, cherry.
Late at night Gib’s puts out free spicy noodles for its patrons. My party was delighted beyond measure. Not pictured: faces full of noodles.
Madison is the locus of politics and education in the state of Wisconsin, as it houses both the grand state capitol and the state’s flagship university. Boasting spectacular views and pastimes in the lush summer and snowy winter months, this odd isthmus city boasts more cultural creativity than outsiders expect.
This is to lay the groundwork for a bold claim: every time I drink cocktails in Madison, I discover something new before it begins to appear on Bay Area cocktail menus.
You doubt. I sympathize with your confusion but assure you that my years of ongoing investigation confirm the claim.
This time it’s aquafaba or, as it’s more commonly described, the liquid from canned chickpeas that you can whip up into a passable and vegan meringue. In cocktails it can serve as a frothy egg white substitute or simply as a silky note of texture. The first time I spotted it on a menu was at Gib’s Bar.