Huge shout out to Lane Harlan, who is single handedly providing my area with food and intriguing late night cocktails (ok, so I guess there is also P&L…) But, that has nothing on the dazzling ambiance and enthralling wall of Mezcal’s happening at Bar Clavel.
There is parking in the evening – an actual lot if you don’t want to park on the street, which makes it super easy. The entrance is up the stairs with the glowing lights, not towards the outside tables. I like the outside atmosphere, but I prefer the air conditioning during these summer days and the interaction with the bartenders well versed in Mezcal. Anthony taught me so many things about Mezcal vs. Tequilla vs. other Mezcals.
I do love me some agave drinks, but I also know better than to drink too many in public and when I am driving, so I stuck with one of their inventive cocktails. I went with the Michalada, kind of like a bloody mary but better – tecate lager with the juice of a lime, tomato-clam juice, salsa maggi e inglesa – in a mug with a chili salt rim. I must say I nursed it and by the end, it got a little extra spicy. I did see some other cocktails on the list; I am interested in trying the classic marg next.
You can also order individual tastes of different Mezcals, talk to the bartenders, they will walk you through the menu – it’s set up by grower/producer and then lists the type of agave plant and the area. There are tons of choices – I dare you to try them all, just not in the same night.
There are also some gorgeous glass bottles filled with mezcal that Lane herself has collected on her various trips. Once you get a feel for your favorite styles and then try a few of the selective ones.
I will be back… I will have food, probably in about 40 days…. The queso fundido is calling my name.