The creation of breakfast cocktails, and the drinking of them, is a fine art. So fine, apparently, that there’s a hole in the market. Case in point, who else here is done with mimosas? Fortunately, 1933 Group’s West Hollywood bar Harlowe is debuting a brunch menu featuring cocktails that follow the rules of day drinking: 1) is it hangover-friendly/-curing and 2) is it light enough to render you still functional for the rest of the day?
The answer to both here is yes. General manager Chris Amirault and bar manager Ben Scott (Lukshon) created a selection of drinks ranging from a refreshing aloe cocktail to a super savory and spicy traditional Bloody Mary to not only complement the new brunch food menu but also help you survive your hangover.
“You’re eating most of your calories at brunch. They tend to be a little heartier and I like having a lighter approach to our cocktails,” says Amirault. “They’re not super boozy. You’re not going to have one cocktail with your meal and then wanna go take a nap. These are incentives to have food, a couple of our drinks and then you’ll continue on your day.”
Here’s a closer look at the cocktails, which debut with the new brunch food menu on February 8.
Friendly Fire: “We wanted to do a lighter version of a Bloody Mary. Something that wasn’t so chunky but still a little bit savory. More your spring/summer Bloody than your heartier winter Bloody,” Scott says. Inspired by sangrita flavors, the addition of watermelon syrup provides a savory but refreshing note.
Breakfast of Champions: This traditional take on a Bloody Mary uses seasoning condiment Maggi to create a “super savory and delicious” morning drink. It’s an umami bomb on its own.
Wakey Wakey: For an everlasting gobstopper effect, try out this flip ,which features an applewood smoked bacon-washed bourbon, a whole egg, maple syrup, coffee grounds…basically everything a good diner breakfast offers. “This is definitely for the person who is not afraid to eat rich. I like this to be the last thing you drink. If this is the first thing you drink, you’re probably only going to want a piece of toast,” says Amirault. There’s a reason this one is served in a smaller glass.
Aloe Me To Introduce Myself: Not to be confused with the aloe cocktail in Sotto with the same name. This one is a smart version of the Melon Ball, according to Scott. “It’s certainly day appropriate. We have a lot of fun doing the haute version of lowbrow cocktails. And so we decided, wouldn’t it be fun if we did a smart version of the melon ball?” asks Scott.
Sex, Drugs & Heartfelt Conversation: This is inspired by chai tea latte since, according to Amirault, “A lot of L.A. girls drink chai tea lattes. So get a familiar flavor in there but also challenge them a little bit with bourbon and 151-proof rum, things that they wouldn’t be drinking. But I think those flavors really complement each other.”
Early & Often: This play off a gin-style Tiki cocktail is actually an homage to Constantino’s Revenge, a refreshing Venezuelan rum cocktail. “We wanted to show that gin can still be Tiki but make it more of a vegetal twist as well,” says Amirault.
Coffee Is for Closers: Rather than do another Buena Vista-inspired Irish coffee, Amirault and Scott took inspiration from the Tipperary, one of their favorite Irish coffee drinks. This one is topped with Green Chartreuse whipped cream.
Parties of drinkers looking for bottle service will be pleased with the new offering of large-format cocktails served in 1.75-liter bottles. “The idea is to do bottle service our way,” explains Amirault. Two bottled cocktails will be available: an Old Cuban (rum, sugar, lime, mint syrup, house carbonated Chardonnay) and the Slow Dance (St. Germaine, Galliano, “kind of like a very refreshing winter spiced champagne”). If you insist on mimosa service, you can get fresh squeezed orange juice and bottles of Cava.