Night Watch: Bash of Boca

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Bash of Boca
5970 SW 18th St., Boca Raton.
Call 561-447-7171, or visit here.


"What's a 'Brazilian'?" a woman to my left asked.

"It's when they do all of it," her brunet friend replied.

She recoiled. "Ooh, I had that once -- never again. From now on, I just keep things neat down there."

I was seated in the "sports bar" area of Bash: a large, high-ceilinged room at the front of the establishment that is composed of dining tables, a big ol' blocky bar, and flashing flat screens in every direction. I was studying a drink menu.

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South Florida's Ten Best Cocktails

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It might be that cocktails are easy to come by. Or it might be that South Florida is difficult terrain to safely navigate while sober. But it's probably just that we fucking love to drink. Because we all love to drink, and because there are so many venues in which to do it, the despots heading up New Times decided we ought to make things easy for our readers.

So we compiled a list of ten good cocktails, some with secret and complicated recipes, some simple and straightforward, all tasty and drunk-inducing. If you derive any pleasure whatsoever from Night Watch, our regularly appearing nightlife column, you should read this now. Consider it your guide to South Florida cocktail-culture. More »

Night Watch: Rok:Brgr Burger Bar & Gastropub

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Rok:Brgr Burger Bar & Gastropub
208 SW Second St., Fort Lauderdale.
Call 954-525-7656, or visit here.


Rok:Brgr is revitalizing the stretch of Himmarshee Village that's home to otherwise boring boozeholes and tired dives. This gastropub vends excellence in the form of sundry beers, potions, bacon-flavored bourbon, and of course, the highly moonshine-shot-soaked cherries. (Backwoods drinking never felt so classy.)

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Night Watch: Wild Olives by Todd English

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Wild Olives by Todd English
5050 Town Center Circle, Ste. 245, Boca Raton.
Call 561-544-8000, or visit here.


Wild Olives by Todd English: The best of Boca's booze-slogging crowd comes out to sip wine, sample flatbread, and shoot the shit. Possibly, they also come to peek at the epic cleavage that belongs to the blond bartender who came limping in shortly after I'd taken a seat at the big wooden bar to stare pensively at the cocktail menu.

"What happened to you?" a regular slouched over his drink asked her immediately.

"They're rough on me here!" The bartender, Anne, laughed and put her crutches down. She was slender with a magnificent rack and the kind of face you can stare at for awkward lengths of time. "I think it's time to quit your part-time wrestling gig," he joked.

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Night Watch: Absinthe Lounge

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Absinthe Lounge
5150 Town Center Circle, Boca Raton.
Call 561-392-4600, or visit here.


"People come in here all the time asking questions about absinthe," said Mike, the dark-haired, black-clad bartender.

"They want to know -- 'Is it legal?' 'Does it really make you go crazy?' "

"Wait, it makes you go crazy?" I asked. (Besides, after a certain amount, doesn't all liquor?)

"People think that drinking absinthe caused Vincent van Gogh to cut off his own ear, but that's all myth," Mike said exasperatedly.

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Night Watch: Nan's Hideaway Lounge

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Nan's Hideaway Lounge
803 SE Eighth Ave., Deerfield Beach.
Call 954-426-0590.


Nan's Hideaway took me far too long to find. That's because it's located just off Federal Highway in a plaza in which the establishments encircle the parking lot; this hideaway is a modest little building with reddish-orange cursive letters that spell out the name. Inside was a long, narrow room: a jam-packed wooden bar running along one side, a few tables pressed against the wall on the other. Pam, the bartender, sported dark curly hair and a shirt that said "Life Is Good" in sparkly letters.

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Night Watch: The Rustic Cellar

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The Rustic Cellar
409 SE Mizner Blvd., Boca Raton.
Call 561-392-5237, or visit here.


Dark mauve curtains hung from the huge windows of the Rustic Cellar, and through them I could make out a few couples, seated on circular yellow chairs, talking intimately. Inside smelled like a clean hotel; the room had a long, curving black bar, behind which stood a gargantuan wall unit lined with dozens and dozens of wine bottles. High shelves holding prized wine bottles lined the clay- colored walls; artistic black-and-white photographs covered them. One wall even displayed a pair of artistic, high-res close-ups of a pink flamingo. Orange sconces glowed wanly from the walls, and Rihanna's "What's My Name" played softly in the background.

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Night Watch: Boo Riley's

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Boo Riley's
2528 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-567-1212.


The bartender, Tina, wore a tight black Bebe shirt, a shiny studded belt, and a confident glow. She flicked the cap off my beer and plopped the bottle down in front of me in one swift movement, and then she was off again, greeting familiar faces with terms of endearment like "honey" and "sweetie." When a couple came in and took the spot next to me, she greeted them by name and started filling a Blue Moon before they could speak. Like most of the crowd, they're a little bit wrinkled but damned good company.


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Night Watch: Laser Wolf

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Laser Wolf
901 Progresso Drive, Ste. 101, Fort Lauderdale. Visit here.


"Basically, this is a Fort Lauderdale bar without all the frat boys and douches that you see on Himmarshee these days," said Pat, who is the financial backer and one-third of the hipster triumvirate behind Laser Wolf, SoFla's coolest new chill zone. (He's also written a bit for New Times' food blog.) He's lean with light stubble and legendarily large hair. "I guess what we're going for is 'cool hangout.' "


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Night Watch: Brick House Tavern and Tap

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Brick House Tavern and Tap
1451 N. Federal Highway, Fort Lauderdale
Call 954-537-5344, or visit here


The age of the Beer Snob has dawned on South Florida. Finally! Plastic liquor cups have been tossed to the wayside in favor of a tall, chilled glass full of frothy, foamy, thick, and delicious beer. And the newest beer-specializing chain to grace our beloved spit of land? Brick House Tavern and Tap, where heady beers are best coming straight out of a full-size, 100-ounce beer bong. Chug, chug, chug, chug....

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