Without much travel lately, I’ve been meaning to visit cocktail bars in the City that I haven’t yet tried. In the past, I have avoided places in the Theater District because of their over-priced menus and tourist-gouging reputations, but I realized that even the local theater aficionados of the city need a place to hang their hats and order a stiff drink.
So I visited The Rum House, located directly across from the Barrymore Theater on 47th Street. Walking in on a late Saturday afternoon, the bar was sparsely packed, with a decent L-shaped bar up front and a huddle of tables and chairs off to one side. There was a piano in the back and an oversized chandelier above, but neither were getting any use on this relatively bright afternoon.
I pulled up to the bar and soon noticed the vast selection of rums. Havana Club, Real McCoy, Chairman’s Reserve – there were old classics I recognized and exquisite bottles I had never seen before. The rum selection was certainly not lacking. Given the setting, I figured I had to stick to a classic and ordered a Mojito with little indecision.
Watching a mojito being made is always a bit of fun, as the bartender whipped out the muddler and started mashing the mint. He topped it off with an all-too-generous helping of Plantation 3 Stars Rum followed by club soda. Topped with a lime, my tall glass of goodness was ready in a jiff.
The mojito was incredibly refreshing, sweet and tangy at the same time. The lime flavor jumped out a bit, and the stiff blend of rums from Trinidad, Barbados and Jamaica woke me up pretty quickly! Given past rum-induced adventures gone wrong, I took my time with this one and sipped my Mojito to the silky smooth sounds of Sinatra.
The most interesting drink I’ve had as part of 50 Drinks Around the World? Certainly not. But a sweet and refreshing option in a low-key and classy cocktail bar? I’ll take that any day.
The Rum House
228 West 47th Street
New York, NY