Green Drinks

Initial thoughts from the Green Drinks happy hour last night (to support the Caroline Collective) at Beaver’s:

The cocktails. Were. Awesome. If you’ve read this blog at all, you’ll know that I’m a beer connoisseur and drink liquor very, very rarely, if ever. But I couldn’t go to Green Drinks and not try one of the Green Drinks themselves. Oh, what a slippery slope… Before I knew it, I had sucked it down and was onto the next cocktail, a Summer’s Delight, which Jeff shoved into my hand despite my protestations. I’m going solely off memory here for the drinks, so if I don’t have them quite right, well…tough.

The eponymous Green Drink is a twist on the traditional Lime Rickey. It was a highly-refreshing mixture of vodka, gin, lime juice and rosemary, with a fragrant sprig of rosemary as a garnish. True to its name, all of the ingredients are organic or environmentally-friendly, right down to the supposedly recycled glass tumbler in which it’s served. Being a non-cocktail kind of person, it had never occurred to me to put a savory herb into a drink like this (I think of lime juice, I think of mint…that’s how my thought process works). But the results are fantastic. The drink is cool, slightly spicy, slightly tart and extremely invigorating.

The next drink was the special of the night: Summer’s Delight. Almost the polar opposite of the Green Drink, the Summer’s Delight was nevertheless equally refreshing and an excellent option for a hot summer’s night. Composed of rum, ginger syrup and Crenshaw melon, with a juicy chunk of said melon as a garnish, this drink was unabashedly sweet and peppery with musky undertones from the rum and the melon. It was an outgoing, fun, sultry cocktail that I could have easily drunk all night.

But the evening wasn’t all about cocktails. There was also food, of course.

The evening’s appetizer special was a redfish ceviche topped with creamy guacamole. I tried very hard to make out all of the ingredients in the ceviche, but it was dark inside and –frankly — I was too busy shoveling it into my mouth at warp speed to make out every nuance of the dish. If they filled a trough with this ceviche, I would eat until my stomach burst. It was that good.

The chunks of redfish really stood out, a welcome change from most ceviches where the fish is overpowered by lime juice or bits of mango or whatever other crap the kitchen has thrown in. With Beaver’s ceviche, the fish truly is the star and is subtly enhanced by the other ingredients. I truly believe that I saw and tasted octopus in there as well, but I could be wrong. If so, bravo. Octopus is my favorite seafood and is criminally underused. There were also fat pieces of carrot and other veggies scattered throughout, making the dish almost a full meal in itself. The chips it was served with were heavenly: flour tortillas cut into pieces and fried until stiff but crumbly. You know the ones…so good.

Great pictures from the night can be seen here. However, if you also want to see really crappy-looking pictures from the night, you’re in luck! Read on…

Inside Beaver's
Inside Beaver’s. Very cozy.

Bar at Beaver's
Home of some very friendly, very professional and very talented bartenders. Also, I love the glass lanterns above the bar…

Green Drink
I totally butchered this photo of my Green Drink, but look at that fantastic table! No, really! Those are environmentally-friendly tabletops from the guys at New Living, a green home and building supply company here in Houston.

One down, one to go
Green Drink down; Summer’s Delight, go! See that delicious scoop of melon?

And, of course, the divine redfish ceviche.

Remember, Green Drinks will be on all summer, so head over to Beaver’s next Wednesday if you want to try some fun, inventive and delicious cocktails and food for yourself.

UPDATE:  Jeff (a different Jeff from the one above) posts his thoughts on the night along with a few menu “suggestions” for the fine folks at Beaver’s.