I am not a fan of the Manhattan cocktail. Every time there has been a best Manhattan, I leave it to Brent to order it and then I take a cautious sip. In reading the description on the BlogTO page I now understand why I had previously not liked them. They were perfect/dry. Whereas the one Brent had at Cold Tea last night was sweet. And so delicious!!! It made me rethink my dislike of Manhattans.
When we first got to Kensington and made the trek down the lonely hallway I was wary it would not be open. We had just eaten at Bannock and the bar was supposed to open at 5pm according to Twitter. It was now 6:30/7pm and I was worried it would be busy. It was closed instead. Dammit.
We were going to go on the way to The Ace but we were short on time. The following day, we would make an evening trip of it. It was again supposed to be open at 5pm, but we were so slow and distracted by the newly acquired Mario Maker game that we did not get there until 7:50pm. The light was not on again, but still we tried the door. No luck. What was going on?!
We went to Mr. Sub, as Brent ate I used the next door Burger King’s strong wi-fi signal to get to the bottom of this mystery. It turns out they need to update their Twitter info. Yelp said that Cold Tea opened at 8pm on Saturdays. Mystery solved.
When we got there a few minutes past the hour the place was already a little busy. There is no menu at the bar. You either know what you want or you ask the bar tender for help. He asked what base alcohol I would like, rum I said. A dash of rum, a splash of gingerbeer, mix it up, add a lime wedge… presto! I was presented a Dark & Stormy. It was delicious.
For the second round I inquired about the five-spice simple syrup I’d read about online, but apparently they no longer had that. In a panic, I asked if he had any specialities. Again, he asked for a base alcohol. This time I said bourbon. And the magic process began again, this time the edge of the glass was rubbed with a piece of orange and garnished with an orange twist. I was a little bit wary of this one. The previous one was served in a larger glass, therefore had more mix. This seemed like more straight alcohol. Again, I was wrong. I did not know bourbon could be made to taste so good without drowning it in other flavours!!!
When we had ordered our first drinks were overheard that they had a lot of fresh mint. We debated having a third round. A mojito would be nice, and then I’d have tried three base alcohols*. And this time I would know beforehand what drink I wanted. I felt a little bad for ordering something so complicated, the mint leaves had to be muddled into the bottom of the glass. It was tasty, but not as good as the best one I’ve had so far, at the Rosedale Diner (when I mistakenly thought that it was the drink of the Kentucky Derby, thinking instead of the mint julep).
Cold Tea was a lot of fun and a great evening.
*turns out mojitos are made with rum, my bad