The Creative Alliance is one of the cultural anchors of the Highlandtown area, bringing a total package of the arts, performance and a well polished restaurant-lounge. Given that, it's no surprise that its selection of cocktails is equally as polished.
The cocktail list features a few time-honored twists on the classics, but my favorite is the Bohemian Cocktail. And according to manager Joe Cimino, it's everyone else's, as it's the best seller.
The drink begins with Green Mountain gin, a Vermont-based organic variety made with spring water and a carefully selected set of botanicals. Cimino puts it simply: "It's tasty. Made right. Has none of the chewiness of other gins out there." Chewiness? I'm no fan of gin but this cocktail indeed lacks in the chewiness department.
Introduced to the mix are St. Germain, ruby red grapefruit juice and a healthy dash or four of Peychaud's bitters, which adds a swirly red haze on the top layer of the cocktail. The mixture winds up being an assertive blend of bitter meets smooth, in part due to the inherent nature of grapefruit juice and the Peychaud's, buttressed by the sweet and floral notes of St. Germain. It's a bittersweet but still remarkably smooth libation.
But don't get carried away if you're enjoying a show at the Creative Alliance; the theater bar doesn't feature quite the same cocktail selection as the Marquee (yet?). And don't be ashamed to stick around for another one before the show, as long as your seat is saved.
How to make the Bohemian Cocktail
11/2 oz. Green Mountain gin
11/2 oz. St. Germain
11/2 oz. ruby red grapefruit juice
3-4 dashes Peychaud's bitters
Combine all ingredients in a shaker over ice, shake vigorously and strain into a martini glass. Enjoy.
Where to get the Bohemian Cocktail
Marquee Lounge (in the Creative Alliance)
3134 Eastern Ave., Highlandtown