Out & About – Dragonfly Bar and Dining

I’ve been a fan of Dragonfly, nestled away in Victoria Square, for some time now. It was the place where I first discovered Rekorderlig Cider and it provided a reminder that not every place in Adelaide has to turn into a club at 9pm. So it was with great pleasure that I returned there. I opted for the Tinkers Mule and my partner chose The Pearess.

Inside Dragonfly. Courtesy of Weekend Notes

We sat outside on this particular evening as it was quite nice and as we move closer and closer to winter, nights like that are going to be few and far between. It was certainly an entertaining evening; overhearing a guy telling his female drinking buddy that guys and girls can’t be friends, slowly getting into weirder and weirder conversation on the relative need of certain people to be laid or not, observing a bit of an altercation with one of the customers and security and also witnessing a group that could be best stereotyped as punks maybe mocking a group of hipsters after they’d left (they do it too!).

(L) Tinkers Mule. (R) The Pearess

(L) Tinkers Mule. (R) The Pearess

The Tinkers Mule is something I’ve had before and something I will keep having because it’s so damnĀ  good. Its Dragonfly’s take on a Moscow Mule, but they let the bar’s Asian influence shine through. It’s a mix of muddled fresh ginger, lemongrass and shiso that then has Sake, Absolut Vodka, elderflower cordial, yuzu juice and ginger beer added to it. Phew that’s quite a mouthful and half of it I needed to look up to know what it was but it all works well together. For those of you playing at home shiso is an Asian spice from the mint family (you can get a Shiso Pepsi!) and yuzu juice is made from a Japanese citrus fruit that apparently tastes somewhat like a lemon or lime.

This drink certainly honors its Mule title because it has some kick. It’s the mix between the sake, vodka and fresh ginger that does it in my opinion. You end up with two kinds of heat. The first is from the ginger, both the fresh and ginger beer, and its a nice, spicy heat. Then, after that, the lasting sensation is the heat from the sake and vodka but without that awful burning from the alcohol. There is also a bit sweetness to it and that would probably be the elderflower and yuzu working. It just takes some of the edge of and makes the drink super drinkable. It’s a drink for cold, wet night in my opinion. Delicious.

pearess

I only quickly sampled The Pearess because I wanted to get back to my Tinkers Mule. It’s a smooth blend of Plymouth Sloe Gin, Bols Pomegranate Liquer, some Absolut Pear Vodka and some pear nectar. I did have a quick sip and tasted like a nice mix. The pear flavor was there and despite a fair bit of alcohol it wasn’t overly strong. It also came well presented with a nice fan of pear on the side. My partner echoed these comments, particularly impressed by the fact that it wasn’t too sweet and showed that it was a well made cocktail by being very easy to drink, with a smoothness as it went down.

Dragonfly hasn’t let me down yet and I’m looking forward to my next visit. The only problem is trying to pull myself away from the Tinkers Mule, something I know is going to be great, to try something different.

 

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On The Shelf- Acme California Pale Ale by North Coast Brewing

So after running the On The Shelf section of the blog for a little while now you’re probably starting to notice a trend, girls. I like hand-drawn pin-up style girls. I have a Bill Ward and Gil Elvgren book as well as a set of original Vargas girl playing cards. For the most part they are tastefully done, classic images of a different age. It’s just a style I’m a fan of, so whenever I see a bottle that uses that style of label I’m going to buy it or someone is going to buy it for me which was the case with North Coast Brewing’s Acme California Pale Ale.

acme1

For starters it was a really nice beer. It has won a bunch of awards at beer events, if that means anything to you when selecting a brew. The site describes it as easy-drinking and clean-tasting beer and that is certainly true. Normally that is the sort of hyperbole I don’t buy into with beer, but it was surprisingly so with the Acme California Pale Ale. I also find few beers refreshing, but the Acme was. In fact, I think I’m fast discovering that Pale Ale’s are my favorite sort of beer. The beer had a great color and it wasn’t too heavy to drink, particularly as I had with a meal.

The Acme label itself, according to the North Coast website, is one of the oldest with a heritage dating back to the 1860s in San Francisco. It’s cool to see a label acknowledging the history in that way. There are actually two beers being made under the Acme brand at North Coast, the California Pale Ale and the California India Pale Ale.

Down to the label. The focus is the Acme girl. Classic marketing girls get me every time. There’s also a great reason to use it given the heritage nature of the Acme label. She’s got a great smile and I love the way her hair flies out as she’s swinging through the air. It’s quite an odd picture when you think about it, why is she swinging on a rope drinking a beer? Then I think to myself, why haven’t I swung on MORE ropes while drinking a beer?

acme

I like the way she swings and drinks so easily, and in one of those weird marketing ways it signifies how easy the Acme California Pale Ale is to drink. It goes down so well you could drink it while swinging on a rope.

This is a seriously good package. Not only is the label eye-catching and well designed, particularly given the heritage nature of the label, but what’s inside the bottle is just as good.

acme2

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