Cut 432 Takes Cocktails a Cut Above
|Cut 432's Brian Albe mixes poetic.|
They're doing it in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami. . . in Delray Beach, not so much. A new generation of--don't call them "bartenders," call them "mixologists"--is flavoring their own spirits, making their own infusions and syrups and garnishes, creating cocktails that go far beyond the usual "vodka-rocks" and assorted abominations that have defiled the holy martini.
Just as Brian Albe and Brandon Belluscio gave the old-fashioned steakhouse a kick in the ass with their chic Cut 432 on Delray's Atlantic Avenue, now they're applying swift, creative foot to dull, boring cocktail posterior with a whole new roster of hand-made spirits and mixers assembled into a slate of inventive new drinks.
I hung out with Brian at the bar awhile back and tasted my way through his handiwork, and I gotta tell ya, if anything can make serial drunkenness a spiritually uplifting activity, it's the cool stuff he's pouring.
|Left to right: Lady lavender, pumpkin spice vodka, jalapeno-pineapple margarita.|
|Did somebody say bacon?|
He's got plenty more ideas for infused spirits too, from buttered popcorn rum and cigar-flavored bourbon to spiced pear tequila and strawberry-basil-infused gin. It's not just wacky-ass infusions either. He's got some killer new cocktails even I would order, and I think anyone who puts anything other than gin, vermouth and an olive in a martini should have his nuts crushed into an ashtray. My fave is the cucumber cosmo, so goddamn good even that horse-faced old Sarah Jessica Parker can't ruin it for me. It's gin, Cointreau, white cranberry juice and cucumber "water," which you make by shredding a buttload of cucumbers and hanging them in cheesecloth to drip out their liquid.
|Cuke cosmo: eat that, Sarah Jessica Parker.|
Hand-made booze. Hip cocktails. A cool bar. In Delray.
Who'da thunk it?