“The mellow lighting and modern lines paired with the retro-esque clock over the bar gives it a unique flair that we haven’t really seen elsewhere in the city.”
Neighborhood: Back Bay
Address: 120 Huntington Avenue Avenue
Date of Visit: Monday, October 24, 2011
Bartender Name: “105 PM bar P”
Brasserie Jo is cool and sophisticated. They have a wide assortment of liquor that covers the entire spectrum of what one would want, and even prompted a conversation between the two of us about what Eric might be allowed to have in the home bar in the distant future. The mellow lighting and modern lines paired with the retro-esque clock over the bar gives it a unique flair that we haven’t really seen elsewhere in the city. The clientele at the bar was pretty eccentric and diverse, and we heard no less than three European languages and a multitude of topics being discussed while eavesdropping on our neighbors. The liquors displayed over the bar here are perfect to investigate if enjoying a libation alone, as some are not found at other Boston bars.
The menu here is modern French, with a number of classic yet fresh braised beef options as well as other tasty sounding dishes as well. The cocktail menu is probably unmatched in terms of a hotel bar playing with various fresh ingredients based on our previous experience, which was really great to find! In full disclosure, we do want to note that we broke our own rules here in terms of a spending limit. All of their mixed drinks on the menu were $13, so for two, we were over our $25 including tax and tip budget. However, they were well worth it!
Valerie’s Drink of Choice: Sandy Bottom Cosmo for Cancer
Ingredients: Sandy Bottom drink, triple sec and an infusion of kiwi flavor
Review: I wanted to go to Brassire Jo’s because they were one of a few bars offering up pink beverages for October as it’s breast cancer awareness month. For the scoop on some other bars participating, check out this post from BostonChefs. The Sandy Bottom Cosmo for Cancer is based upon a pre-mixed drink, Sandy Bottom, which I had never heard of before. According to this site’s description, it ” is a carbonated, coconut rum drink with citrus essence; this medley of rum, tropical flavors and fizz brings the sensation of chilled waves at your ankles and warm sun on your skin.” I can’t tell you what the drink tastes like on it’s own, but when mixed with a bit of triple sec and kiwi it is absolutely amazing. It was a perfectly sweet and light concoction, and strong too! I really felt as though I should be enjoying it from a beach, but I’ll take it at a bar too! The best part about this drink is that a portion of the sales go to benefit Susan G. Komen for the Cure and it came with this great bracelet! Stellar.
Eric’s Drink of Choice: Cucumber Rosemary
Ingredients: Effen Cucumber vodka, fresh rosemary, lime, house pressed cucumbers
Review: This drink was Effen AWESOME. In my notes, the first word I wrote was “Wonderful!” The fresh house-pressed cucumbers and rosemary hid any bite that may have been leftover from the Cucumber vodka. I still knew the liquor was in the drink, though, but it was more of a “flavor” playing a large part in the balance of the cocktail. The color was off-putting at first, and reminded me of one of those fad “green shakes” that people have for breakfast nowadays, but once I overcame my fear of cucumber in a cocktail, I was immediately impressed by the taste and texture. FIVE CHEERS FOR THE CUCUMBER ROSEMARY!
Wine Prices: They have an extensive wine list with reds, whites and champagnes available by both glass and bottle. House selections will run you $7 a glass whereas the rest are $9-14 a glass and $31 and up per bottle.
Beer Prices: Five draft beers, including South Deerfield MA’s own Coffeehouse Porter from the Berkshire Brewing Co. All drafts are either $6 or $7. There are also 12 bottled options, with lots of micro-brews from Berkshire Brewing Co. and Pretty Things. Beer here is not cheap – the micro brews will run you $16-18 for a 22 oz. but there are a good number of options in the $6-9 range.
Other: Brasserie Jo has four “classic” drinks all for $13 each. Along with the Cucumber Rosemary above, there is a blueberry lavender drink as well as an espresso drink. They also have eight “Seasonal Cocktails,” also $13 each, such as the Pumpkin Pie (vodka, pumpkin puree, milk and pumpkin whipped cream) and a Cranberry Cobbler (bourbon, cranberry-brown sugar syrup, cranberry juice, lime).
Brasserie Jo’s full drink menu is online here!