Paying $20 for a cocktail seems outrageous enough as it is. And if you are going to spend that much on one, it better have something spectacular in it like, uh, weed. But a drink made with baby food? What fun can be had with that?
Turns out it’s an ode to Rande Gerber and George Clooney. Georgie, Iron Chef Geoffrey Zakarian’s new restaurant in Beverly Hills’ Montage Hotel, is serving up the Georgie Gerber made with Gerber’s peach baby food, Casamigos Blanco Tequila, fresh lime juice, agave nectar, and egg whites. Both “Mr. Cindy Crawford” and “Mr. Amal Alamuddin” created the Casamigos Tequila that is featured in the drink.
But Brian Van Flandern, cocktail creator for Georgie and The Garden Bar, says the baby food is actually excellent in cocktails because it is basically a fresh puree without additives, plus its flavors are cocktail friendly. When he explains it like that, why not? Modern bartenders have been using fresh juices since King Cocktail Dale DeGroff popularized them in the ’90s.
And ever since the baby food cocktail appeared on the Georgie list it’s become one of the bestselling drinks for its novelty and taste. Apparently even its namesake is a fan. “I had the pleasure of serving the cocktail to Rande Gerber on the opening weekend,” says Van Flandern. “He loved the cocktail’s flavor and creativity.”
I sipped on it myself and it’s actually pretty light in that it’s not too sweet or too boozy, which is what Van Flandern was going for as the cocktails here are meant to be food-friendly. But, yeah, it’s $19. You can actually blame the pricey Casamigos tequila for that, not the baby food.
For other whimsical wallet-busting libations, check out Zakarian’s The Garden Bar which also opened in the Montage across from Georgie. The cocktail bar which took over the old Parq Bar space showcases playful variations on classics and pre-Prohibition cocktails. For instance they’ve got the Holy Mole, a chocolate martini that tastes more like chocolate milk. Thanks to its mix of fancy Valrhona 80% bitter dark chocolate syrup, Hennessey VSOP cognac, half & half, agave nectar, and chocolate mole bitters with a cocoa powder rim, it’s not as cloyingly sweet as the chocolate martinis you might have sworn off in the past.
And the Garden Prohibition Tea cocktail — which actually doesn’t have any tea in it at all but Ron Zacapa 23 rum, Lustau Palo Cortado Sherry, lemon, demerara water, orange, and apple bitters –is served out of a tea pot into dainty tea cups. It’s a “deliciously fresh variation on a classic punch that would have been served before and during Prohibition,” says Van Flandern. “Often the best speakeasies served cocktails in tea cups and saucers. This is a fun way for two or four people to share a cocktail with friends. The exact recipe is a secret and will ultimately evolve over time.”
The cocktails at Georgie and The Garden Bar may be too cha-ching for most people but remember: the spirits used in them are pretty high-end. Plus it’s Beverly Hills.
Georgie and The Garden Bar, 225 N Canon Dr., Beverly Hills, 310-860-7970