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    Bemelmans Bar, New York Review

    35 E 76th St, New York, NY 10021, USA
    Bemelmans Bar Review
    5 Star Rating
    Tags: New York, USA, Cocktail Bar reviewsThe Bill: £64 per head

    When someone mentions New York, there’s always one area that immediately springs to mind for us - the Upper East Side. An area that oozes glamour, sophistication and impeccable manners, the Upper East Side is home to many a praised hotel and restaurant, with the Carlyle being no exception. During a recent visit to the area, we decided to pay a visit for a drink and found ourselves in the wonderfully chic and intriguing space that is Bemelmans Bar, located inside the Carlyle Hotel.

    The Carlyle Hotel is a part of the Rosewood group - a selection of hotels we have come to know and love throughout the years. The Carlyle has been open since 1930, and due to its lengthy service, this institution has inevitably generated quite a crowd. With Rosewood offering elegance in abundance in everything they do, we knew Bemelmans was likely to be quite the hotspot, and we certainly were not disappointed.

    Named after Ludwig Bemelmans, the creator of the classic Madeline children’s book, Bemelmans makes for a lively spot complete with a sophisticated crowd and an impressive live music scene. With walls adorned with murals, there’s plenty to catch the eye in this establishment; second only to the impressive drinks menu.

    When we arrived, the first thing we were delighted to note was the pianist, who we came to learn tickles the ivories there most evenings. This understated yet undoubtedly classy background music makes for a wonderful atmosphere, and one that we instantaneously relaxed into. Once seated, we browsed the extensive and intriguing drinks menu.

    “Named after Ludwig Bemelmans, the creator of the classic Madeline children’s book, Bemelmans makes for a lively spot complete with a sophisticated crowd and an impressive live music scene.”

    First up, I chose the Tequila Manhattan, which saw a mix of Casamigos Anejo Tequila by George Clooney & Rande Gerber, Carpano Antica formula sweet vermouth and Angostura orange bitters. This was a punchy start, and an extremely enjoyable tipple. My partner chose the Pisco sour, consisting of Pisco 100, egg white, fresh lemon juice, angostura bitters and simple syrup. This refreshing drink was sharp yet sweet with just the right balance of aromatics.

    Next up, I chose the Passion Royale with passion fruit infused vodka, fresh lime juice, topped with champagne and served over crushed ice. This was a very fruity drink indeed, made all the more indulgent being topped with Champagne. My partner went for The Gin-Gin Mule, which saw Tanqueray mixed with ginger beer, muddled mint, fresh lime juice and simple syrup.

    Finally, I chose The Gillespie - Hudson Manhattan Rye Whiskey, fresh lime juice, rosemary & ginger syrup and ginger beer - for me, this was an exceptional finishing drink, and perhaps my favourite of the evening. My partner chose the Midnight express, which was a mix of Stolichnaya vanilla vodka, calvados, godiva liqueur, Kahula, grand Marnier and espresso coffee.

    We were highly impressed with the craftsmanship of the drinks at Bemelmans Bar. It’s obvious that each and every bartender has been expertly trained to deliver a wonderful drinking experience, and their skills were certainly not lost on us. We would highly recommend Bemelmans as an excellent choice of drinking establishment, should you find yourself in New York’s Upper East Side.

    Photos courtesy of Bemelmans Bar
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