NYC and San Francisco have long been the epicenters of American cocktail culture, Finally a few months ago I had the chance to travel for the first time to San Fran with the intention of checking out what was happening there. I made a list of all the bars I’d heard of and ones that had been recommended. On the top of my list was Bourbon and Branch, a bar styled as a modern-day speakeasy. This bar is located in a space in the Tenderloin neighborhood that was once an actual speakeasy. Packed with knowlegeable bartenders and drinkers, I was ready to order some pre prohibition cocktails and I got to say I wasn’t disappointed.
Make sure you make reservation online and get a password that they will ask for before they let you in.
Others places we checked out were Alembic, Range, Absinthe Brasserie, but it was our last stop of the night that really sealed, in a great way, our time in this city. Suggested by one of the locals, we went to ” Berretta”, think of Mario Batalli’s Otto in NYC, mixing elements of a modern day pizzeria, high energy atmosphere and a great respect for their cocktail program. It was simply a fun place to be at with zero snobbery that sadly some cocktail lounges are known for. Bar manager Ryan Fitzgerald has done a great job with the selection of the cocktails featured on the menu, my favorite being the ” Acadian”, a beautiful combination of Rye, sloe gin, lemon, honey absinthe and rosemary.