By Anne Jones
Yes, the cocktail hunt continues…
Bemelmans Bar @ The Carlyle, A Rosewood Hotel – Madison Ave. at 76th St.
Bemelmans radiates old-world money and is called home by many well-to-do hotel guests, Upper East Side elite and a slew of celebs, but if you happen to be strolling along Central Park and get a itch to sip scotch with society pages, you won’t feel out of place here. Bemelmans and their new master mixologist, Brian, have done very good things in making this a bar quintessential New York go-to, serving some of the best cocktails in the city and creating a place where anyone can feel welcome and relaxed. The lights are low and the vibe is masculine, but alongside the Armani suits you can easily find a group of cute twenty-something girls chatting it up at happy hour.
My drinking partner and I settled into a leather banquette and sampled the first concoction Brian brought out, an Agave Gingerita made with blue agave, cointreau, fresh ginger, lime and egg white. Now, mind you, these cocktails are $19 each, but I have to say after one sip, I would have no bones about paying that and some change for this cocktail. In fact, all of the drinks here are worthy of their price tag. The Gingerita was refreshing and frothy. The coolness of the drink offset the spicy-ness of the fresh ginger; this is the drink for summer. We also sampled the Blue-cumber made with brandy, cucumber juice, a hint of Stoli blueberry and fresh lime. This baby won Brian the Iron Barchef award and speaks for itself. The Dry Rye Cherry Sling pays homage to the rye comeback and can make any non-whisky lover a convert. I’ll certainly be sipping the Sling this summer.
World Bar – The Trump Tower, 845 United Nations Plaza.
If the vibe at World Bar is simple and stark, the cocktails are this Jekels’ Hyde. Drinks at the World Bar are inventive, vibrant and globetrotting. If you’ve heard of the place, you know that they offer the $50 World Cocktail with Remy XO, but unless you’re feeling mighty deep in the pockets, the more affordable $11 drink menu will more than suffice.
I sat perched at a high table looking down on what was mostly business men and keeping a keen eye out for The Donald (it’s a Trump building) or Derek Jeter, who lives very close-by, while I sipped on what is now one of my new favorite summer cocktails, The Pims Cup. Kenneth, the talented bar extraordinaire, ever so graciously mixed up his version of the concoction with Pimms, cucumber and mint. (If I were not in the present company of such diplomats, I would have chugged it down to the last drop). You can find cocktails from all around the world that taste so authentic, you feel as if you were sipping a glass of that heavenly liqueur right on foreign soil. Take for instance the Brazilian Caipininha, World Bar’s version is light with a kick and oh-so-refreshing. Feeling philanthropic? The World Peace cocktail lends part of its proceeds to the UN, (as if you needed an excuse.)