Saturday, February 10, 2007

Special Foodventure #27: Edison Bar (Los Angeles / Downtown)

Disclaimer: I was invited to this event, so pretty much everything was gratis (save for tips)

After hearing the Edison buzz from EaterLA, I knew I had to check it out on its grand opening on Feb. 9. So I made a few correspondences and got myself in (alas, unlike EaterLA I was not paid a personal delivery of the invite by the nice-looking man, which, by the way, deserves a pat on the back for a neat PR/marketing campaign.)

An ultra-lounge situated in the basement of 108 W. 2nd Street (same building as the downtown Pitfire Pizza Company; it's no Mozza, but has gotten pretty good buzz, and I digress,) upon entering I give mad props to the layout - which, true to its name, had an old-school-yet-classy industrial power plant theme with furnaces, generators and spiraling chandeliers with old-style light bulbs (think Power Company card/square on the Monopoly game.) The restrooms were also uniquely designed, with a communal fountain-style hand sink and a side table where, if you wanna get your game on right, you can grab some Eclipse breath mints, slap on some hand-softening lotion, and spritz on one of a dozen varieties of perfume/cologne, all for a contribution to the tip jar.

There were also giant screens playing silent flicks, pool table, jukebox and stage where a jazz band were bellowing out some lively tunes.

But onto the part we all care about: drinks & food! Like all events where the alchy's free, the bartends at both bars were going beserk stirring, shaking and swizzling it up. When I approached the bar at 9:15 p.m. (fifteen minutes after start time) - there were already empty Liter bottles of spirits being swapped out by the bussers & bar assists.

Thankfully, even with all the bustle, bartender Deanna had some time to show off some of Edison's house specialty drinks:
The Edison - lavender-honey & pear liqueurs + pear nectar -- reminds me of a fruity and lighter Manhattan.

Lady MacBeth - sparkling wine with port "the color of blood" (I can only assume it's a
ruby) - a nice bubbly cocktail that can easily rival those made at French 75s. Alas, I didn't go crazy and ask for someone to be rubbed off.

Peeled Apple Buck - not your usual overly sweet & fruit appletinis (and for a real one, go to
Lola's, which lay the claim for inventing it) - this is made with apple brandy & ginger ale, smells and tastes like a fizzy spiced apple pie.

Steel Trap - gin, kahlua, vanilla vodka + tonic - despite the ingredients involved, it's a deceptively dangerous & delicious drink.

Others worth mentioning (but I haven't tasted, for the sake of my driving WAY later in the night, and oh yea-- my liver!) included the Hot Blooded (a blackcurrant cosmopolitan with a flamed orange wheel), the Hemingway with absinthe (not sure if it's the real green fairy deal, since its importation is prohibited in U.S.) and an enough-said Marlowe Would Roll Over. Also, an impressive Scotch catalog.
As for the food, the menu consisted of pretty standard classic bar fare: burgers, salads, sandwiches, etc. Not sure if the passed around canapes came from their own kitchen or a catering company from afar, but the tasty bites included soba in sesame sauce (pictured), deviled eggs topped with caviar, mini paper cones of fried calamari, smoked salmon & horseradish cream on bread and oyster shooters that weren't particularly spicy - undecided on whether it's a good thing, since I'm used to more fiery shots but the oysters in this one turned out to be really fresh which would've been otherwise masked from the heat.

But all in all, it's a pretty fun place that I would swing by if I'm downtown with some moolahs to spare (it's fairly upscale) and perhaps after a heavy meal from Little Tokyo that's a few walkable blocks away. And while I'm still ambivalent about the gentrification of the neighborhood - the city's moving forward with it anyways and it practically is screaming for a place like this. And now, it's here!

108 W. 2nd Street (cross: Main)
Los Angeles


Erin S. said...

Thanks for the review--I like downtown a lot and am always looking for new places to try....will check it out soon!

Chubbypanda said...

Nice one! You're quite the hipster these days. =b


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