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The Violet Hour


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#151 Alchemist

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 10:41 AM

To get back on topic TVH is doing a special cocktail on the 14th. It is a cocktail that I have dancing around for years. It is called a Juliet and Romeo. It is an elixir of Hendricks, mint, lime, simple, Cucumber, rose water and sodium. Named indelicately for what cucumbers and roses resemble, it was first served to a patron of TVH that takes my breath away. There was some heavy flirting going on, so she became the inspiration for the drink. Like a gentleman I put the lady first.

Toby



A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

#152 newbie21

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Posted 31 January 2008 - 10:55 AM

To get back on topic TVH is doing a special cocktail on the 14th.  It is a cocktail that I have dancing around for years.  It is called a Juliet and Romeo.  It is an elixir of Hendricks, mint, lime, simple, Cucumber, rose water and sodium.  Named indelicately for what cucumbers and roses resemble, it was first served to a patron of TVH that takes my breath away.    There was some heavy flirting going on, so she became the inspiration for the drink.  Like a gentleman I put the lady first.

Toby

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Of all the new and wonderful cocktails I have been delighted by, the Juliet and Romeo is the Most Divine. Toby, you are masterful!!

#153 shelly59

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 09:00 AM

I have been following this thread for a while with the hopes of getting a chance to get to The Violet Hour sometime. well, I am in Chicago this weekend to see my sister and we are looking around for a really nice place to have drinks & food . I would LOVE to try TVH. Is there good time to just come in for drinks & food? Do we need reservations? Much thanks.

#154 Alchemist

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 09:22 AM

If you can be a little more specific, I will do my best to help out. Some general rules are Friday’s are busy earlier, people get off work and head straight to the bars where on Sat., there is usually dinner involved so it isn’t as busy until after 9-10. This weekend could be screwy due to Valentines day looming. There will be less groups and more duces who snuggle, taking up a six top, for hours and only have a couple of drinks. There is a bar here in NYC that only accepts parties of three or larger on VD. Yea swingers!!!

Sunday should be a nice mellow night at TVH. That is what I would recommend, but if events conspire against you and you have to go on Fri or sat let me know.

Toby



A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

#155 shelly59

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 09:43 AM

Our plans are still a bit loosy-goosy, but the quiet times, especially Sunday, appeal greatly.

#156 Alchemist

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 10:02 AM

TVH is open from 6-2 every day but Sat when it's 6-3. The quiet times are the best, and sitting at the bar is my favorite. Chatting up the bartenders, watching your drink built before your very eyes, asking questions, and going "Dealers Choice" will make your visit as good as it gets.

Enjoy,

Toby



A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

#157 shelly59

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 10:10 AM

Thank you so much. The Good Lord willin' and the water don't rise, I think we can make it on Sunday. Thanks, again, for your help :-) Really looking forward to this.


ETA: Should we ask for you, Toby?

Edited by shelly59, 08 February 2008 - 10:26 AM.


#158 tsg20

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 04:36 PM

Incidentally, my Old-Fashioneds have improved a lot since the posts above: the 2-1 syrup and fresher bitters made quite a difference, and I suspect practice is helping, too.

More on-topic: presumably Joaquin of D & C will be there all evening 11th-13th? I think we're going to try to make it in one of those nights for some pre-Valentine's day food and drinks. Will the Juliet and Romeo be available before the 14th? It sounds right up my street...

#159 Alchemist

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 06:33 PM

Thank you so much.  The Good Lord willin' and the water don't rise, I think we can make it on Sunday. Thanks, again, for your help :-)  Really looking forward to this.


ETA: Should we ask for you, Toby?

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I fly in on wed. so I wont be there on sun, I am sorry to say. Ask for Michael.

Toby



A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

#160 Alchemist

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Posted 08 February 2008 - 07:02 PM

Incidentally, my Old-Fashioneds have improved a lot since the posts above: the 2-1 syrup and fresher bitters made quite a difference, and I suspect practice is helping, too.

More on-topic: presumably Joaquin of D & C will be there all evening 11th-13th? I think we're going to try to make it in one of those nights for some pre-Valentine's day food and drinks. Will the Juliet and Romeo be available before the 14th? It sounds right up my street...

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Good to hear your Old-Fashioneds are shaping up. You know how you get to TVH? Practice, practice, practice. I am going to check with my bartenders to make sure they all have the right spec's, ASAP. Joaquin will be behind the bar Tue the 12th and Wed the 13th making Death & Co. drinks. I am going to be behind the bar on and off the rest of the week. I think I will be closing on sat if all goes well.

Toby



A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

#161 lettezilla

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Posted 13 February 2008 - 02:31 PM

we're really looking forward to coming out for our "pre-valentines day drinks" tonight! (i'm tsg20's wife, you can tell how enthusiastic he is)

#162 newbie21

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Posted 13 February 2008 - 02:44 PM

we're really looking forward to coming out for our "pre-valentines day drinks" tonight! (i'm tsg20's wife, you can tell how enthusiastic he is)

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Toby's on his way into town, but ran into several delays. We should be there having cocktails by 10:30. Hope to see you then!

#163 tsg20

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 10:44 AM

We had some absolutely fantastic drinks from Joaquin last night, including several that will have me drinking more tequila in future. For me the highlight was the Fresa Brava; I had no idea that combination of fruit and heat was possible in a cocktail. Truly remarkable.

#164 Chris Amirault

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 11:27 AM

Do tell. I can only find one reference to a Fresca Brava here, and it sounds pretty interesting.
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#165 plattetude

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 11:41 AM

The original post had the correct name -- Fresa Brava. It's an original from the fine folks at Death and Company, ingredients as follows:

Jalapeno infused Herradura Silver Tequila
Yellow Chartreuse
Fresh lemon juice
Strawberry

It's a fascinating combination of tart, sweet, and heat, I gotta say.

Christopher

#166 Chris Amirault

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 12:05 PM

No St. Germain?
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#167 plattetude

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Posted 14 February 2008 - 12:27 PM

No St. Germain?

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Nope. Angus's blog was referring to the Elder Fashion cocktail, also at Death+Co, when he mentioned St. Germain. Which is a killer drink in its own right -- Plymouth gin, St. Germain, orange bitters, grapefruit twist, built as an Old Fashioned.

Christopher

#168 Alchemist

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Posted 18 February 2008 - 08:52 PM

I want to thank all the people who came out to support Joaquin at The Violet Hour last week. And also those folks who joined me on Sat night for some cocktails.

The bartender exchange was a huge success. There was a wealth of information that was shared over more than a few cocktails. I think that there was such good will and good times that everyone involved would do it again in a heartbeat. I went to Death & Co., saw Kirk and things were going well there as well. I hope that something will be posted on The D&C thread about the exchange from their prospective.

So thank you all again. And I’m sorry I didn’t get to say goodbye to everyone on Sat. night I was having a bitters emergency in the kitchen.

Toby



A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

#169 eje

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Posted 20 February 2008 - 11:54 AM

Got a chance to meet Kirk during his tenure at Death & Co and have a pretty amazing Chartreuse Swizzle. Quite the spectacular start to a very good evening. Loved the falernum he had brought with him.

He was definitely rocking the flaming drinks!

I can't speak to the bar's perspective, but he seemed like a nice man and a talented bartender.
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#170 avant-garde

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Posted 25 February 2008 - 02:40 PM

Does anyone know when TVHs website will be complete? I check it every now and again and it has been saying "Site is coming soon" for quite some time now.

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#171 Alchemist

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Posted 25 February 2008 - 03:42 PM

Does anyone know when TVHs website will be complete?  I check it every now and again and it has been saying "Site is coming soon" for quite some time now.

www.theviolethour.com

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I will check to see how the website is coming along. Other than info like adress and opening times and a menu is there anything else a cocktail geek would like to see on the site?

Toby



A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

#172 BryanZ

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Posted 25 February 2008 - 06:57 PM

A better designed version of the D&Co. website. I like that they share classic recipes and cocktail basics. Maybe a list of the seasonal bitters being used in the bar at that time. Obvious information that is sometimes more difficult to find than it should be is the phone number and prices on the menu and the reservations/door policy.

#173 avant-garde

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Posted 25 February 2008 - 08:31 PM

Does anyone know when TVHs website will be complete?  I check it every now and again and it has been saying "Site is coming soon" for quite some time now.

www.theviolethour.com

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I will check to see how the website is coming along. Other than info like adress and opening times and a menu is there anything else a cocktail geek would like to see on the site?

Toby

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Here's what I'd like to see I guess...

- Bitters (to purchase)
- Menus
- Photos
- Videos
- Links to Glass/Bar Ware

And I agree with Bryan, I like D&Co's website as well. Especially how they list the types of alcohol they have available.
"A woman once drove me to drink and I never had the decency to thank her" - W.C. Fields

Thanks, The Hopry
http://thehopry.com/

#174 nr706

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Posted 26 February 2008 - 03:17 PM

I have to say, while TVH was okay, I wasn't as wowed as I had hoped - mostly due to the service. My friend and I got there relatively early - 6:30 on a Saturday night, and we were seated right away. We told the server we'd be ordering drinks and food, so she left both menus. While my friend was in the rest room, I ordered the drinks (which were very good - I had the winter sazerac, she had tequila drink, I don't remember which one) and mentioned that we'd be having food, too, as soon as my friend got back. She got back, the drinks came, and the server left before we could get a word out about our food order. We spent the next hour trying in vain to get a server's attention (smiling, slightly waving without trying to be obnoxious, even saying "excuse me" a couple of times as a server walked past) so we could get some food into us before the 8:00 performance we were going to. Finally someone came by around 7:45, and we just asked for the check, since there was no time to place the food order.

In retrospect, I suppose I could have gone up to the bar to place a food order, but we kept seeing servers come by, to other tables, so I remained hopeful that eventually we could get someone's attention.

Maybe they just don't pay much attention to old people like us.

As I said, there's no question the drinks were very good. I just wish the service was up to snuff. (Caveat - one visit, YMMV, etc.)

#175 tsg20

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Posted 15 March 2008 - 06:04 PM

Two more visits to TVH this week - one drink on Sunday, and then a rather longer session last night, with my sister and her boyfriend (visiting from London) along for the ride. Last night's visit was the best time we've had there yet; we got through 14 cocktails between the 4 of us, tried a couple of others, and finished off with shots. Somewhat miraculously we all felt OK today, if a little tired.

It didn't feel like it was going to go so well when we arrived at around 1840, because the bar was full, so we had to take a table - but thankfully after 5 minutes a load of people left and we were able to take their places. This definitely made a huge difference to the evening - I've still yet to experience the table service, but I can't imagine it's anywhere near as fun as chatting to the bartenders and seeing the drinks being made. In particular, after our first drinks we all went with what Kyle suggested, most of which wasn't on the menu.

I kicked off with a Blue Ridge Manhattan, which was great, although possibly a little strong for a session drink. After that was my personal highlight: an Old Fashioned made with Van Winkle Family Reserve. Easily the best Old Fashioned I've had yet; whole depths of flavours I hadn't appreciated before. My sister's boyfriend had a Thomas Handy Old Fashioned at the same time, which was also excellent, although the additional strength was a little much for me following on from the Manhattan. I finished with a 19th St Special, a suggestion of Kyle's from the Death and Company menu.

Throughout the evening Kyle took the time to discuss the drinks with us, give advice on drinks and recipes, let us sample other drinks he was making, and finished off the evening with a shot of rye each. I think it's fair to say that we all felt that it was the best cocktail experience we'd ever had.

#176 lettezilla

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Posted 15 March 2008 - 06:22 PM

i'm tsg20's wife, and i completely agree that it was our best visit so far. the host was really nice and when i explained that we really really wanted to sit at the bar, said she'd keep an eye on things and that we could move over if something opened up. we did manage to order from the menu with a server just before we moved, so we all started with somewhat more "safe" drinks.

i started with a rangoon fizz because i was stuffed-- we ate a late lunch at kuma's and followed that with scooters, so i wanted something to perk me up. the ginger syrup did the trick. for my second drink kyle suggested the juliet et romeo mentioned above, and i really enjoyed it-- i've been making versions of the southside at home and so have been increasingly into gin recently.

when the boys moved to their fancy old fashioneds, i was finishing that drink. i wanted to try something totally different for me, and ended up with a gin old fashioned made with north shore gin. totally amazing! i was scared to try it at first, but the bitters took the edge off and the gin was a really soft lavender smell. i was very happy with that.

we also ordered food around this point-- devil's eggs are a favorite, and the others shared the oysters. still hungry, toby's (my husband, not the alchemist, which actually did end up confusing various people through the night) sister and i shared a sandwich platter and guys got the deep fried PB&B. their eyes lit up when it came out, although i don't know how they had room for that much food. i've been really happy with all the food we've tried, plus it's nice that none of the flavors are so strong that they change your perception of the drink. the only change i would make is to make the fried pickles closer to dill and less bread and butter, for a cleaner flavor, but that's just preference.

by the time we got to our last drinks, we were confident enough in kyle to say "just make me something good" and he took it from there. he made me a 131, which he said is more of a spring drink-- but since it was the warmest day in memory, that seemed appropriate. i can't remember all the elements, but there was sparkling wine and mint, and it was a great way to end the evening.

toby's sister's boyfriend, who has been to a lot of bars in his day, said that it was the best bar experience he'd ever had. can't wait to go back again! this was a fair amount of alcohol for us, and we still managed to get up to watch the river turn green at 10:30 am!

#177 tsg20

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Posted 19 March 2008 - 05:18 PM

We're clearly in the habit - last night was our first "late" visit, "late" being 10pm. We put our names down, went away, and had seats at the bar before 10:30. 3 more excellent drinks - a Rangoon Fizz, 20th Century, and a Dos Hermanos - yet another excellent riff on the Old Fashioned, this time with rum and a lot more orange. It was a lot busier than it tends to be earlier in the evening, unsurprisingly, so we didn't have much time chatting to our bartender, but we had no problem getting drinks when we wanted them.

#178 Alchemist

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Posted 21 March 2008 - 09:49 AM

Spring is upon us, and I am coming to town to do some training and be behind the stick at TVH.

I am not sure what time, but a few hours on Sun, Mon, And Tue to see as many people as possible. There is going to be some heavy experimentation, and some last min. tweaking of the Spring menu. Should be fun.

Hope to see any eGulleters that are bopping around Wicker Park this Week.

Toby

ETA: http://www.timeout.c...pretty-in-drink

This is kinda funny I thought.

Edited by Alchemist, 21 March 2008 - 10:09 AM.




A DUSTY SHAKER LEADS TO A THIRSTY LIFE

#179 newbie21

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Posted 21 March 2008 - 11:24 AM

ETA: http://www.timeout.c...pretty-in-drink

This is kinda funny I thought.

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[/quote]

Funny like a hot fashionista! Nice spread, Toby!

#180 Alonso de Cordoba

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Posted 23 March 2008 - 08:39 AM

Spring is upon us, and I am coming to town to do some training and be behind the stick at TVH.

I am not sure what time, but a few hours on Sun, Mon, And Tue to see as many people as possible.  There is going to be some heavy experimentation, and some last min. tweaking of the Spring menu.  Should be fun.

Hope to see any eGulleters that are bopping around Wicker Park this Week.

Toby

ETA: http://www.timeout.c...pretty-in-drink

This is kinda funny I thought.

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Sounds great -- I will be in tonight or tomorrow night.