Bar to Bar Through Beantown
“The bar area itself is spacious and the round space allows for a great view at the magic happening as cocktails are mixed and served.”
Address: 1 Marina Park Drive
Date of Visit: Sunday, August 26, 2012
Bartender Name: “PM Bar”
We strolled into Strega as our last stop on the Waterfront and sat down at the bar, which had a few regulars sitting around it. The dark space embodies the North End feel one would expect from an Italian restaurant, but the high ceilings, walls of windows, and modern details and lights give it the contemporary feel one would expect from a newer establishment on the Waterfront. The bartenders and the rest of the staff were all very friendly and well-versed on the menu, and our bartender quickly complemented us on our choice of cocktails and made them to perfection.
The bar area itself is spacious and the round space allows for a great view at the magic happening as cocktails are mixed and served. There is also a wall of TVs in this space, showing various sports games. While that may sound like your typical array, these TVs are all different sizes with some images split up on three screens, or even turning onto the corner – definitely a unique touch. Looking for outdoor seating? Strega Waterfront features a nice outdoor space complete with music coming from the trees and a full bar on the patio – perfect for groups, especially if you’re just doing drinks and apps and don’t want to split a tab 25 ways.
Valerie’s Drink of Choice: Anguria
Ingredients: Grey Goose Citron, sweetened watermelon juice, coconut water, pineapple juice, grenadine
Review: I originally ordered this drink because I was intrigued by the “sweetened watermelon juice.” the bartender informed me that they were out, but that she could instead make it with strawberry instead. (This being out of a drink ingredient has sure happened to me a lot lately). I was disappointed, but as soon as I had a sip of the revised Anguria, my opinion soon changed as the drink was phenomenal Thinking about it now, I’m not sure I would have liked it as much with the watermelon flavor. The flavor was very unique, which I attributed to the use of coconut water. It was thick and milky and was the perfect dessert beverage (even though I had already had dessert at our Restaurant Week Dinner!). I was even look past the few ice chunks and give this drink five cheers. That’s two winners in one night! Check out our Morton’s review for the other pink drink that earned this achievement.
Eric’s Drink of Choice: Mandarino e Cognac
Ingredients: Courvoisier vsop, tangerine juice, lemon juice, ginger
Review: I needed to mix up my drinks a bit this time, and something I don’t think I’ve ever reviewed is any type of cocktail containing cognac. As mentioned before, our bartender was quick to complement my choice and expertly free-poured the cognac and other ingredients and mixed it up, only stopping for some quality control (using a small straw, of course). After giving the libation her approval she slid it across the bar and waited expectantly only walking away after gaining strong approval regarding the drink’s deliciousness.
The cognac was perfectly balanced with the other ingredients, but not overwhelmed in that its distinctive flavor remained. The drink was just strong enough to encourage sipping, despite being delicious enough to want to consume it faster. All in all, for my first cognac-based review, this one was a hit!
Wine Prices: The full 432 page (holy cow) wine list is view-able online here. The Cliffs Note? Strega has fourteen whites and twenty four reds available by the glass for $7 to $25 each, with most being in the $9-11 range. They also have several varietals available by the half bottle starting at $28. Champagne/Sparking wine is also listed by the glass starting at $8.
Beer Prices: Beer offerings are by the bottle only, including eleven regulars and a rotating flavored beer of the month. No prices were listed on the menu.
Other: Strega offers six martinis and eight specialty cocktails – no prices listed on the menu. The offerings here are distinctive and unique, including concoctions like “Estremo” made with Ultimat Vodka, Patron Cintronge, raspberry puree and lime juice, as well as the White Cranberry Gimlet made with Hendricks, white cranberry juice, fresh lime, and rosemary. Their cocktail list is seasonal, so expect some variation if you visit often. The full cocktail list is available online here.