Street | Drinks
Margarita — the drink of spring break! Of girls’ nights out! Of Tex Mex!
Not so much at the Ivy Inn. Those looking forward to a broad-bowled glass with a salted rim will be sorely disappointed, as Ivy Inn serves its margaritas in a highball, on the rocks, cut with a wedge each of lime and lemon. There are no customizable flavors, no frozen margarita machines churning out strawberry-watermelon concoctions, no tiny umbrellas. No, this is a Serious Margarita. While Ivy Inn’s margarita lacks the posturing of many of its red and blue-tinted peers, its flavor is fairly standard: robust with tequila and lime, with just a hint of sweetness for good measure. All in all, it’s an average, unexceptional drink, which makes it perfect for a casual night out with friends.
Angry Orchard Hard Cider ($2.50/Glass)
The bartender told me that the vast majority of Ivy Inn customers — there to catch the game or down a round with friends — usually opt for the cheapest drink on the menu: Budweisers and Miller Lites ($2 per glass). But Ivy Inn’s drink menu also boasts a number of more distinctive drinks like Angry Orchard Hard Cider. It’s pricier than your average Bud Light, but the Angry Orchard is a great deal considering the difference in flavor. Crisp, refreshing and sweet like an apple at first sip, the cider gives way to a subtle dryness and sourness as it goes down with just enough fizz to keep the drink interesting. It even comes in its own Angry Orchard glass (embossed with a thorny, angry orchard), so you know this is the real deal!
Rosa’s Sipper ($12)
It’s hard to choose just one drink from a menu filled with titles as compelling as an “Elderberry Margarita” (espolon reposado, bar hill elderberry cordial, grand marnier and lime; $13) or the “Great ‘Dirt’ Road Farm Martini” (crop organic vodka, brine, dry vermouth, great road farm pickled vegetables; $12). But Rosa’s Sipper, a rose-colored concoction of St. Germain, Cocchi Americano Rosa, grapefruit and Prosecco, is a worthy selection. Served in a tiny champagne flute, an artful deli-slice of grapefruit peel curled in the bowl, Rosa’s Sipper is what the pink André wishes it could be — light, sweet, citrusy and refreshing. It is pricey, but less expensive than Agricola’s standard fare where entrees run from $25 to $60 range, making Rosa’s Sipper a great option for afternoon drinks with a friend or a classier night out.
Pear brandy, Cointreau, Prosecco, cranberry and lime make up this peach-colored drink. Served in a martini glass with a shot of orange rind, the Royale looks delicate but tastes strong — the brandy and Cointreau definitely stand out. At first sip, the Royale tastes slightly flowery and a bit like champagne, but then the citrus and brandy move in, giving it a serious bite. There’s a slight pulp to the drink because of the pear brandy, giving the Royale more body than your typical cocktail. The Royale is made with more adventurous drinkers in mind — those who aren’t afraid of strong alcoholic flavor or a little pear pulp in their glasses.