(Anyone catch the Rent reference? If not, it's all good.) This past Saturday night, I was invited out with my friend Meredith to try Take Me Out's mixology tour. I consider myself pretty well versed in the NYC bar scene, but I jumped at the chance to be chauffeured around in a limo (YES A LIMO), sped through the lines (NO WAITING IN THE COLD), and seated at a reserved table (NO STANDING AROUND EYE PULLING THE BARTENDER TO SERVE DRINKS).
|Inside of the swanky limo|
The night started in Union Square where we were grouped with a pair from England, two friends from Philly and Chicago, and a foursome out celebrating a birthday. Our guide for the evening was Connor, a model who was jetting off to Europe in a few months to walk in fashion week runway shows. Don't we all wish. Anyway, we were immediately served some sweet concoction of Champagne, vodka and St. Germaine. Not totally my cup of tea, but hey it was free.
Our first stop was Bathtub Gin, a speakeasy-style bar hidden behind a coffee shop in Chelsea. I had heard all about this place before, but a) never would have found it myself and b) loved the fact that I didn't have to look like a fool who didn't want to mistake a coffee shop for a bar. It's all about what you know after all.
Here we took a cue from the name (yes, we split drinks to cut costs) and tried the Bathtub Gin Martini with extra olives of course ($15).
|Bathtub Gin from the outside...what's all the hubbub outside a coffee shop late at night?|
Back in the limo we all went, where Connor had a bit of fun popping some corks and passing out shots of vodka. This is about the time of the night where I've learned enough in my life to not say yes just because it's free.
Next stop was uptown at the swanky Stone Rose Lounge in the Time Warner Center. This is not a place I ever would have visited in a million years on my own (hello hidden elevator that also takes you to the same floor as Per Se and Masa and $16 well drinks). However, it was fun to grab a couple of couches in the corner and watch the lights of Columbus Circle. The people watching at the bar was also unique and let's just say very James Bond, if you're into that kind of thing. We tried the Spicy Paloma ($16) with casamigos blanco tequila, thai chile aperol, grapefruit and soda.
Piling back in our stretch carriage, things began to go wrong for some of our friends. Moderation is key everyone. En route to our last stop in the Lower East Side we had to make a pit stop for some of our companions and thus Meredith and I decided to head on home before the limo turned back into a pumpkin before our very eyes.
At $150 a head, this tour is not for the casual nightlife seeker, although I've heard they offer Groupons at half off. You are essentially paying for the convenience of not having to plan your night (and the ease of getting into popular places and having a table), a 3-hour chauffeur, and some cheap drinks you're likely not going to want much of in the limo. I could definitely see this as a fun thing to do for a bachelorette party/birthday if you can fill the whole limo (so as not to have to deal with strangers with drinking habits that might derail your night). All in all we had fun, but this definitely would not be for everyone.