I can’t make them. I don’t have the first clue as to the ingredients. No, my proficiency lies in the consuming. Imagine curling up in the big black leather chair with an Old Fashioned, boring the socks off John Humphrys by banging on about the same topic endlessly. Perfect.
Being the studious type, I make every effort to broaden my horizons where possible and after hearing numerous complimentary stories about TriBeCa, I had to investigate.
Located on Berry Street in the old Shere Khan building and next door to the sadly defunct Metropolitan, TriBeCa quietly moved in about 18 months ago and has been slowly building a loyal fan base ever since: returning not only for the drinks, but also TriBeCa’s amazing stonebaked pizzas.
The brainchild of Dom Levi – who was involved in the launches of Alma De Cuba and Zeligs – TriBeCa’s vision was to create an alternative to the over-hyped, overpriced bars and provide a laid back un-fussy vibe similar to the independently stripped back establishments you’ll find clustered around its New York neighbourhood’s namesake.
Accompanied by my glamorous assistant (I might be dedicated to my cause but solo boozing is dull. What’s the point of pissed anecdotes without a captive audience?) we started early and sensibly lined our stomachs with the stoneboked specials of the house.
Get it right and an authentic, thin-crust Neapolitan pizza really is a culinary masterpiece – and you can forget the doughy blandness and portion-controlled toppings of your chain pizzerias, as TriBeCa’s are 12 inches of sheer pleasure.
Freshly baked on the premises in their authentic wood fired oven, they were light, fresh, oozing with flavour and – the best bit – at £5.95 a pop, didn’t waste too much of our drinking money. These are austere times and that’s a difficult-to-argue with price tag.
Then it was down to serious business. With a fairly comprehensive cocktail list (if slightly hard to read menus demanding a lot of concentration – black on dark blue is not an easy colour combination for inebriated eyes. Actually, scratch that, for any eyes) I started off with the classics, all diligently noted in order to file a complete report…At least, that was the initial intention.
A sourly effective Margarita to begin – the wimp in me opting for sugar over a salted rim – followed swiftly by the bar staff’s recommendation of Strawberry Laces which tasted exactly like it’s pick ‘n’ mix namesake.
Next up, the Prince-inspired Raspberry Beret which was far less diminutive than the artist, but packed just as big a punch, finishing on a high note with my favourite, the Manhattan.
A selection, I can confirm, that ticks all the boxes, and supplies you with your recommended Five a Day while you’re at it.
If I’m honest, from this point on things started to get a touch too hazy to give a considered opinion. But with helpful and attentive bar staff, a mixed bag of punters creating a buzzy, entertaining crowd – avoiding the undesirable element you might find in other venues – and big comfy sofas to slouch on, I think I might have found my new favourite haunt.
15 Berry Street, Liverpool