Now that we’re not afraid to venture out into Chicago, it’s time to venture out with our palates as well. What better way than with cocktails?
Elixir Lounge agrees. The adorable cocktail boutique has just introduced its spring cocktails, all of which are fresh and fruity – but not too sweet – and altogether original. Also, delicious.
New for spring are the Jardin de Ville, Apples to Oranges, and Georgia’s Revenge. All new; all tasty. Jardin de Ville is North Shore Gin #6, Crème de Violette, lavender simple syrup, fresh lemon and cucumber, and ginger beer with cucumber slice garnish. I love anything with ginger beer and Créme de Violette so this was a slam dunk for me. Very refreshing.
Apples to Oranges has Aird’s Applejack, blood orange puree, and house-made orange shrub. For those not obsessed with historical mixed drinks, a shrub is basically sweet, acidic, tasty, and well-partnered with liquor. Elixir Lounge’s Apples to Oranges is complex, and just about perfect for a cocktail.
Finally, Georgia’s Revenge plays with jalapeño tequila, peach, and lime – it’s a much more sophisticated margarita. Despite the jalapeño, Georgia’s Revenge isn’t spicy, as the heat is cut with the other flavors. It’s all good.
The spring cocktails are great, but Elixir Lounge, with its Oriental rugs, cozy atmosphere, and really nice restrooms (this is important in a bar), has more to offer this summer. There will be weekly infusions – wherein a liquor infused with a seasonal flavor like pineapple or coconut – will be featured for a limited time. As well, there will be specialty cocktails, also featured for just a week.
After the hoopla of Pride dies down, Elixir Lounge will offer classes for which a limited number of tickets – just 8 to 12 people who can sit at the bar – will be sold. Each class will feature a different spirit for tasting as well as mixing.
In the mean time, the spring cocktails are worth trying out in the relaxed lounge.
[I was invited to a media tasting in preparation for this article.]