I wasn’t done yesterday after my two-and-a-half-hour lunch at Cafe Nougatine, oh no. I went to Benjamin Steakhouse for dinner with the excellent Andy Battaglia, The Onion’s city editor for New York. I’m pretty sure that of all my friends Andy loves steak the most, and he has certainly eaten at Peter Luger more often than any of my other friends — possibly more than all of them combined. So it made sense to take him to a steakhouse whose kitchen was being run by a Luger veteran.
So we ate German potatoes and the Benjamin salad — which had lump crab meat, avocado and other things — and asparagus and the porterhouse for two with a bottle of Frog's Leap Cabernet followed by pecan pie and cheesecake with tawny port.
But first, I asked about cocktails.
Victor, the manager, said the cocktail list hadn't been printed yet, but he gave me a nearly completed version, and now I give it to you (in case you're wondering, I had a Vesper — which is not a traditional Vesper as it is made with Bombay Sapphire rather than Gordon’s — and Andy had the Rang Pur Bloodhound):
Benjamin Steakhouse Cocktails
Benjamin’s Martini — Remy XO, Grand Marnier, Amaro Montenegro, dash of lemon juice
The Vesper Martini — Bombay Sapphire Gin, Stolichnaya Vodka, dash of Lillet, lemon twist
Negroni Classico — Campari Orange, Beefeater Gin, Cinzano Sweet Vermouth
Don Julio Margarita — Don Julio Blanco, Grand Marnier, lime juice, simple syrup
French Connection — Courvoisier VSOP, Amaretto Dissarono
Tequila Sunrise — Cuervo Tradicional, Grand Marnier, finished with a dash of grenadine
Rang Pur Bloodhound — Tanqueray Rang Pur, Dry Vermouth, Sweet Vermouth, orange juice
Crimson Crush — Belvedere, lemon juice, dash of cranberry juice, raspberries and Chambord
Yellow Cab — Navan Vanilla Cognac, pineapple juice, Cointreau
Espresso Martini — Absolut Vanil, Tia Maria, Kahlua, Bailey’s, espresso
The Left Bank — Smirnoff Vanilla Vodka, Chambord, pineapple juice
Apple of Eden Martini — Grey Goose Citron, Apple Pucker, lime juice, apple sliver
Cosmopolitan Martini — Absolut Citron, Cointreau orange, Cranberry juice, dash of lime juice
Bellini — Prosecco, peach schnapps and peach nectar
Royal Peaches and Cream — Crown Royal, peach schnapps, Grand Marnier, vanilla ice cream
Kir Royale — Moët & Chandon, Crème de Cassis
Scropino — Moët & Chandon, Grey Goose Citron and mango or raspberry sorbet
Chocotini — Smirnoff vanilla, Bailey’s Godiva liqueur, spash of cream