Category Archives: cocktails

Cheap martinis

Cheap, good martinis are hard to come by.  Boys may scoff at women’s love for martinis, marking it as some jaded Sex in the City fantasy.  But if you’re not careful those cocktails will knock you on your ass as they as are potent as they are delicious.  Besides, if you’ve watched an episode of Mad Men you know that a good martini can be pretty manly. With this in mind, plus my craving for a new Friday night watering hole hangout, led me to 60 West Bistro and Martini Bar on Shelbyville Road.

Cheers to my Bellini martini with Pinnacle vodka, peach schnapps, peach puree and champagne.

Having been to Drake’s next door and passing 60 West quite a few times I wasn’t sure what to expect.  A couple of things left me pleasantly surprised:

  • Holy martini list (PDF) batman. 61 martinis if I counted right. Yes I know some of the names are girly, I hate the word ‘MANtini’ and a majority are made with sour mix or sprite.  This isn’t for mixology purists.  But admit it… that list is impressive!  And my bellini was excellent.
  • When you walk into 60 West it is deceptively bigger then it looks from the outside.  A heated patio, plenty of elegant booth space, and a nice big wooden square bar. And loved the easy parking out back (coming from a downtown dweller).
  • The waitstaff/bartenders were excellent and patient with my hundreds of questions.  I’m allowed to be picky. You’re talking to a former server/hostess for 6+ years.
  • The atmosphere was appealing.  Candles everywhere, wooden accents and cool 20 x 20 ft wall of a Makers Mark art installation.  Martini bars can be fru fru. This was not.
  • Cheap drinks.  $5 martinis on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday and 1/2 price bottles of wine Wednesday and Friday.  You could do some serious damage to yourself with $20.
  • A decent food menu (PDF) with interesting dishes:

My pizza with maple fennell sausage, roasted tomatoes, balsamic glazed onions, shitake mushrooms, mozzarella cheese and a house made red sauce.

My bill after two martinis and this split pizza: $28 bucks. And I didn’t even order anything on special.  Cheers to that!

Open Monday – Thursday 4p to 12m.  Friday – Saturday 4p to 2a.  3939 Shelbyville Rd.

60 West Bistro & Martini Bar on Urbanspoon

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Trolley Hop

Well looky lou this Friday is the first Friday of the month, which means it’s time for the downtown Trolley Hop! Now is as good a time as ever to explore the quirky shops and restaurants on Market and Main Street where you can browse art, eat food, and pick up the fiercest jewelry.  Like this little trinket I just picked up from contemporary art and jewelry shop FLO:

FLO offers up the coolest jewelry, like this Plowdowski piece. Found on my last Trolley Hop!

During the Trolley Hop, FLO opens up its gallery with complimentary sangria as you’re browsing the jewelry.  Is this your first hop? There’s a couple things you should know.  The First Friday Trolley hop takes place from 5p-11p and encompasses Main and Market Street all the way up to the Glassworks building by Roy Wilkins.  Park and ride the trolley for free.  Get on at any Trolley Hop sign up and down the streets. Parking downtown is free after 6 pm.  Here’s some of what’s coming up this Friday:

  • Against the Grain Brewery is having musical guests Sarah & Scott performing at 9 pm.
  • Actor’s Theatre is offering up free appetizers as your browse the 18th Annual African American Art Exhibition and mingle with artists.
  • Watch live glassblowers at the Glassworks blow cool February pieces, like Hershey kisses, while enjoying the cash bar.
  • Cruise over to the newly renovated Whiskey Row lofts and pay $10 for a magic show. Shows are at 7:30p, 8:15p and 9p.  This guy performed at President Obama’s inauguration!

Craving more? I’ve only scratched the surface. Find out more about the upcoming exhibits.  Let me know your trolley favorites!

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Bourbon to the Rescue

Need a light at the end of these dreary winter months? Well how about this: Woodford Reserve is releasing its new double barreled oak reserve bourbon in March 2012.  Start saving up your change because a bottle will set you back $49.99, but with this bourbon’s reputation I bet it will be worth every penny.

Why is this exciting? Because this is Woodford’s first permanent line extension in 15 years.  They don’t just add to their product brand willy nilly.  Here’s the science behind how they make the stuff:

Double Oaked begins as the original Woodford Reserve Distiller’s Select recipe. This the fully matured Bourbon is then rebarreled at 110 proof in a second barrel is crafted uniquely for this product created at Woodford Reserve’s own cooperage. The second barrel is uniquely toasted and charred to create the rich flavor and color characteristics producing Double Oaked, bottled at  90.4 Proof (45.2% ABV).

Apparently it’s the barrels themselves that produce the magic.  Both oak barrels have been charred inside and out for 9+ months producing a bourbon that is sweet with vanilla, cream and honey tastes punching through.  And I can’t wait to try it.

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Support Your Bartender this Holiday Season

Do your favorite Baxter or Bardstown bartender a favor this holiday season and get them some cold hard cash.  It pays their bills better then stories of your college glory days or leaving a crappy tip on a happy hour check! Starting November 19th through December 3rd cast your vote for your favorite bartender’s best holiday inspired bourbon cocktail and win them $500.

Participants competing in Four Roses’ Holiday Bourbon Battle include Asiatique, Avalon, Bearno’s, Boombozz, Flanagan’s, Highland Liquors, Lilly’s, Lynn’s Paradise Café, Monkey Wrench, O’Shea’s Irish Pub, Outlook Inn, Ramsi’s, Seviche, The Bard’s Town and Winston’s. Restaurant and bar guests can vote by texting the name of the restaurant/bar to “22333″… Restaurant winners will be announced the week of December 5.  The bartender credited with the recipe of the winning holiday bourbon cocktail will be rewarded with $500 cash, an engraved Four Roses decanter and a plaque for his/her restaurant.

Best of luck to all participating bartenders, especially O’Sheas who won last year with a cocktail called the “Bardstown Rose”. The martini featured Four Roses Single Barrel Bourbon, ginger ale, hazelnut and orange liqueur, a dash of cinnamon, rimmed in a martini glass with peppermint and sugar and garnished with an apple slice. YUM!

The holidays make you warm and fuzzy. So does a bourbon cocktail.

Update- Here’s a picture of the winning cocktail:

The Flaming Pyroses

West Market getting some Whiskey Loving

Although I absolutely adore the East Market food scene I don’t want West Market to go without some TLC.  Which is why I’m super excited for 2013 (I’m over 2012 already) when Michter’s Distillery opens up across the street from the Louisville Slugger Museum!

Move over bourbon, whiskey has a place in Kentucky too!

Photo courtesy of 

Currently the Fort Nelson Building is caged off for rezoning.  Construction will formally begin next Spring and when the whiskey distillery opens Michter’s will offer both educational tours and tastings.  If you’re unfamiliar with the high-quality brand:

Michter’s current production includes an Unblended American Whiskey, Single Barrel Rye , 10 Year-Old Single Barrel Rye , 25 Year-Old Single Barrel Rye,  Small Batch Bourbon, 10 Year-Old Single Barrel Bourbon and 25 Year-Old Single Barrel Bourbon.

Another great establishment to make our downtown even more awesome(r).  Welcome Michter’s!