Range (of) Cocktails
I have a couple of places that I love on Valencia. One of them is Range. I’ve never even sat in the dining room: I always prefer to sit at the bar. It’s small and lively, and usually served by three staff, which means you can get a lot of attention, especially if you sit in the right place (my favorite spot is right at the end where the servers pick up their orders).
Saturday we arrived at just the right time. My favorite spot was open—yay. The bar filled not long after we arrived. Jeff was the bartender manning that position. Super friendly and gracious.
It was a night for cocktail tasting. I started with a Sungold Zinger—gin, sungold tomatoes, agave and lemon. I espied sungolds amongst their garnishes, and was curious what they were making with them. Jeff mentioned that the drink was written up in 7x7 (I had no idea what that was, and had to ask) so I was compelled to try it. It had the strangest texture—unexpectedly creamy. Initially it reminded me of a Dreamsicle. It was interesting enough, but I can’t say it did much for me, and in the end, I didn’t really like the creaminess.
The next round was Whitman’s Waltz—Buffalo Trace bourbon, maple- roasted peach, bitters and lemon. Wow! Reminded me of the Rogue née Lone Wolf. They roast yellow peaches with maple syrup and then make a purée. Served in an old-fashioned glass over a huge ice cube. Really tasty. I asked about Buffalo Trace, and Jeff said that compared to Bulleit it’s a bit milder.
Well into our meal, after watching several get ordered, it seemed necessary to try the Bottle Rocket. Tequila, strawberry, ginger, chilli, honey and lemon. They make their own chili infusion which gives this drink quite a kick. I like drinks with heat. But I probably would have appreciated this one more if it wasn’t on the heels of the others (I really shouldn’t have…) and if it paired with the food being eaten. I couldn’t finish it. I should have just asked for a taste!
Anyway, we overindulged in food too, where Range also shines.