Despite all of its popularity and Europeanness, Barcelona failed to pan out as a bar city. But it’s far from harming this city at all, especially in the case when you’ve been walking across the city for many hours, one hardly wants anything other than cava, beer or sangria, and these are poured as if from waterfalls at every corner. Actually, I’m not talking about tapas bars, snack bars, as we know them, which in themselves are the whole attraction of the Spanish drinking culture. But to find a cocktail bar is not so easy. However, this year as many as two bars broke into the list of the best cocktail bars in the world according to the recognized critics. One of these bars – Dry Martini – will be discussed next.
It is made according to all the laws of the genre: this old-fashioned bar makes you feel uncomfortable in your sneakers and a T-shirt, even though that nobody around you cares about it is disturbed by your appearance. He commands respect and awe just by itself: a solid bar counter, elegant bottles standing on the shelves that are framing a mirror or standing behind the display glass of the oak cupboard, a bartender with a gray mustache, who looks more like a vintage apothecary in his white coat and with his fragile glasses on. And you are waiting that any minute now he will pull out a pince-nez out of his pocket.
Drinks are mixed in tall glasses, ice inside it has such a quality that it can be poured over several times (which happens from time to time), before it even cracks. They are serving cocktails on a silvered tray, from which you must take it all by yourself. Above the entrance to the ‘laboratory’, the kitchen counter hangs, it registers Dry Martinis that have been ordered. It is mandatory to specify with which gin monsieur/madame prefers to drink this sancta sanctorum. Here the main thing is not to get confused and not to name something that has a rank lower than Bombay. Bartenders look very connoisseur and gourmet, their look reads ‘you will not surprise me with any order’, cocktails for ladies are decorated with miniature pansies.
All this splendor, coupled with bar courses, master classes, a restaurant and a whole school as a part of this bar, is definitely impressive. But it leaves no emotions left. It’s cold, uncomfortable, similar to the lobby bar of a very expensive and upscale hotel, where it is customary to meet business partners. So it’s not a bar, for the sake of socializing matters, but it’s a bar for the sake of a bar, for the sake of the art of drink mixing, it’s their personal theater. You come, you look, you notice, you try (an average Dry Martitni), you leave and you never come back. Probably, this bar is making its name in history with some innovations, or their proportions, or theoretical basis, or silver trays, or a long bar spoon. I don’t know, I didn’t manage to get it.
Nonetheless, the famous bar is not shunning to have a separate menu with mojito. I was pleased, I’ve heard enough scoffs about mojito in Minsk bars and I’m already fed up with all these pretensions and stereotypes. Therefore, it is still nice to go to a respected place with your sneakers on and order a mojito without feeling yourself like an idiot.
Mon-Thu 1:00 p.m. – 02:30 a.m.
Fri 1:00 p.m. – 03:00 a.m.
Sat 6:30 p.m. – 03:00 a.m.
Sun 6:30 p.m. – 02:30 a.m.
One cocktail – 14 euros