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March 31, 2015

Three Bars in SOMA You Should Drink at Right Now

If you find yourself near Yerba Buena in need of a cocktail, there are several new spots to hit up that serve immensely tasty drinks.

Dirty Habit (12 Fourth St.)
Dirty Habit occupies the space that was for many years the “Fifth Floor” restaurant.  More casual but still pretty trendy, the outside courtyard is the epicenter of a "see and be seen" hub and for those who don’t really care, it just provides a little slice of paradise on warm days and nights. While food is served, it takes a back seat to the cocktail menu, which was designed by bar manager, Brian Means. Using a variety of ingredients, Dirty Habit makes some of the tastiest drinks in San Francisco such as “3 Years to Fire,” a blend of Ancho Reyes, Krogstad Aquavit, Orgeat and Lime with ancho chili, cumin, toasted almond and cinnamon. This is a delicious way to start or end an evening. Barely sweet, all of these flavors come together creating a potion that is reminiscent of a toasted almond ice cream bar dipped in spice. Website

Mourad (140 New Montgomery St.)
If you walk a few blocks over to New Montgomery you’ll encounter a new, super hot spot: Mourad. It’s a new venture from Mourad Lahlou, whose other restaurant, Aziza, has garnered national attention for its creative Moroccan cuisine.  Mourad is a bit more upscale, which is not to say Aziza is anything. But a marvelous culinary experience but located in one of the San Francisco’s architectural gems, the Pac Bell Building, the new place definitely lets you feel as if you are having a night out on the town. And, the cocktails definitely promote this experience. All of the bartenders are quite capable but Jessi Lorraine is especially friendly and accommodating. Her version of the Ultima Palabra, a drink made with mescal, lime juice, green chartreuse and maraschino cherry juice is a reason to come back. Website

Trou Normand (140 New Montgomery St.)
If you stumble over to the other side of the Pac Bell Building you’ll find yourself in Trou Normand, which has a pretty different vibe. The younger sister to Bar Agricole, Trou Normand prides itself on two things, house made charcuterie and cocktails. It has more of a hipster vibe but after work the crowd is as diverse as any other downtown haunt. Many of the drinks are whisky based that have roots in older eras such as the Algonquin, a drink named after the hotel, with bourbon, lime, pineapple gum and vermouth. It is refreshing to see it on the list and slurp it down. The namesake of the joint, “Trou Normand,” refers to the Norman tradition of taking a sip of Calvados “between courses to settle the stomach and reawaken the palate.” Website

Photo by Dennis Wilkinson / CC BY-NC-SA

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