Eighteen36 in Higher Kirby shapes Houston’s cocktail scene

Last year has been a tough one for Texas bars. Many large ones, including those in Houston, have had to change drastically due to the pandemic and Governor Greg Abbott’s order to shut down temporarily. Some bars did not survive. On the positive side, some new bars have managed to open up and survive despite the issues. One of them is Eighteen36 in 2221 West Alabama. It opened at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and not only has it survived but continues to grow.

Eighteen36 is located in a building that acts as a collaboration between the cocktail bar of the same name and Bellaire’s Roadster Grill, which closed in 2017, but the Greek and American classics have new life here. The varied menu means that there is a dish that complements almost everything on the varied cocktail menu.

Josh Saphier is the curator behind the multitude of beverage options at Eighteen36. Photo by Ryan Baker.

Josh SaphierAn experienced bartender who has worked on cocktail programs nationwide – including four and a half years at the prestigious Mastro’s Steakhouse in Beverly Hills – oversees the bar program. The drinks menu is meticulous and ambitious. In fact, Saphier said one of its goals is to be recognized by organizations like Tales of the Cocktail, which have an annual awards program.

The range of cocktails is extensive and includes three categories of daily beverages, takeaway options, takeaway kits, and the Innovative Cocktails list of 10 beverages ranging in price from $ 11 to $ 15. There is also a comprehensive selection of beer and wine as well as a well-rounded list of spirits. Houston Food Finder was invited to visit and sample some of the drinks.

There are creative references to pop culture, like our first drink of the night, Glass showcase of emotion. Named after a scene from the movie Anchorman, it’s a nifty, well-balanced potion made from green chartreuse, Venezuelan rum, and sherry. The Venezuelan Rum Diplomatico used is an excellent choice as its smooth taste does not tarnish the herbal qualities of the Chartreuse. The cocktail is topped off with orange juice and topo chico, making it a crunchy drink that’s light enough to enjoy any time of the day or night.

old sparkling cocktail at eighteen 36The cocktail menu of the Old Sparky on Eighteen36 uses a glass rimmed with pop rocks for an entertaining twist. Photo by Ryan Baker.

A good old fashioned one is a must have in any bar, and Eighteen36 offers that Old fashion smoked cherry. This game with the legendary drink is made with Maker’s Mark Bourbon, both chocolate and cherry bitter, and uses Luxardo cherry syrup instead of sugar, which gives the drink a thick mouthfeel. The drink is smoked under glass in front of the guests, which gives it an additional taste and aroma as well as visual appeal.

The six drinks that make up Eighteen36’s signature cocktail selection are either $ 11 or $ 12. Some frozen options are included. An example of a non-frozen drink is Old Sparky, with gin, bitter, lemon juice and cynar. The rich drink offers a little lightness thanks to the glass rimmed with pop rock. Not only is it fun, it’s also functional. The sweets add a little more sweetness and a crackling feeling.

Eighteen36 has an old version of the classic Vieux Carre. Photo by Ryan Baker.

Eighteen36 has a classic menu filled with familiar names like “Eighteen36” for between $ 12 and $ 15 The last word, Paper planes and penicillin. It’s easy to find something for all guests to enjoy. The preparation really shines with that matured in barrel Old place and BoulevardierThanks to a nine-week break, two juicy cocktails were softened.

Eighteen36 is open Mondays to Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 1 a.m., Thursdays and Fridays from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. The bar also offers private mixology classes for groups ages 6-10. Learn how to make three cocktails from a list of 12 options including Old Fashioned, Aviation, Mai Tai, and Black Manhattan. Visit the class page for more information.

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