Bar to Bar Through Beantown
“While nothing can quite top the experience at the previous location, this bar is still great thanks to some of our favorite bartenders and servers in town.”
Neighborhood: Back Bay
Address: 181 NewburyStreet
Website: Joe’s American Bar & Grill
Date of Visit: Thursday, April 28, 2011
Bartender Name: Denise & Hasch
Previously located on the corner of Dartmouth and Newbury, Joe’s American Bar and Grill Back Bay made the move down two blocks to a full fledged Newbury Street location last summer. While nothing can quite top the experience at the previous location, this bar is still great thanks to some of our favorite bartenders and servers in town. The new location has a great feel to it. The top level has a large bar, flat screen TVs, and it’s best feature – a retractable roof, making it prime outside dining during the hot summer months. Downstairs is more of the restaurant portion, another bar, and a private dining area. The kitchen exterior is all glass, making it easy to see the chefs preparing your meal. This place gets a fairly large happy hour crowd, and is therefore mostly young professionals on weeknights. On the weekend it’s really anything goes (we recommend coming for brunch – the food is delicious and the meal includes a beverage…aka mimosa, bloody mary, Bud Light or screwdriver). It can get crowded, especially upstairs, so be prepared for either wait for a table or stand near the bar.
Valerie’s Drink of Choice: Sparking Berry Sangria
Ingredients: Cold River blueberry vodka, Bacardi Limon, Massenez Creme de mure Wild Blackberry, Thatcher’s Organic Yumberry, Prosecco Rose
Review: Nothing quite beats sangria on a warm day and Joe’s sangria almost always hits the spot. In order to serve you, reader, I veered away from my traditional order of white sangria (an item not on the menu, but certain bartenders mentioned above would love to make for you) and decided to try Joe’s newest addition to the sangria family – the sparking berry sangria. This was an extremely fruity beverage with a bit of a bite! You can really taste the blueberry and it’s sweet but not too sweet. What I love about it (as well as the rest of the sangria offerings) is that one, it comes in this very large glass, and two it has not only wine, but liqueurs also, giving you an extra buzz for your buck. I would not recommend having more than one of these babies in one sitting, but definitely have one!
Review: When we arrived at Joe’s I asked my two favorite bartenders for something tasty and delicious, and that’s how I ended up with the wonderfully pink, absolutely delicious, “Daddy Likey”, courtesy of the one and only Hash (who is known for making up delicious concoctions not always on the menu). I don’t know exactly what went into the cocktail, but it tasted like an extremely delicious martini. I could barely taste the vodka, and the mix of sweet and tart was perfect on the warm day, as Joe’s had all of the “patio” windows open. Be careful though, these can be dangerous, as I was able to polish it off about twice as quickly as Valerie finished her drink (and immediately switched to beer, because another one of these and I may not have made it home!)
Wine Prices: Whites, blushes, and reds are available in glasses ranging from $5.75 to $12, and bottles from $21 to $7o with most being in the range of twenty to thirty dollars. Some varieties are available in half bottles. Champagne is also offered!
Beer Prices: Tons on tap and draft – most are $5.50 each.
Other: This place has got it all – frozen drinks, champagne cocktails, three kinds of sangria, cosmos, margaritas, martinis- you name it! Obviously they have a full bar too and will serve you what you’d like off the menu.