HAPPY NEW YEAR!New Years Eve for me is a good excuse to dress up and hit the town. Even though it wasn't planned until the last minute, late dinner reservations for a group of six at 28 Degrees proved a fabulous way to ring in 2011. The swanky South End restaurant with an intimate nightclub vibe, a softly lit interior and the most alluring bathrooms I've ever set foot into opened about five years ago in an unassuming brickfront space at One Appleton Street. The lively bar area was filled with patrons happily forgoing the ridiculous, always overpriced NYE cover charge. As we waited for our table I sipped on a Blue Cheese Martini ($11.50) made with Zyr Vodka and blue cheese stuffed olives. Since we were seated admittedly a bit later than our 10pm reservation, 28 Degrees sent over complementary appetizers for the table in the form of Grilled Bread ($5) and Warm Gougeres ($7). The former boasted crusty yet delicate strips of toast, served alongside were tasty spreads including an Olive Tapenade and a Bean Puree. Gougeres are a french style savory cheese puff which were served topped with Parmesan and chives. Even though it wasn't a big deal to hang out by the bar for a little bit, it was most appreciated that they acknowledged our wait with complementary bites!A toast to start things off, and I was ready for another martini. Earlier I tweeted with 28 Degrees about my overwhelming excitement for the cocktail menu. They recommended a seasonal favorite the Naughty & Spice ($10.50) A great recommend, this cocktail made with Diabolique Local Spiced Bourbon, Peach Liquor, Orange Juice and a Cinnamon Rim was an inventive pairing of ingredients and a beautiful pour of orangey-peach colors. Leah's next (we inhaled martinis, true to form) was the Elderflower Aviator ($9.50) New Amsterdam Gin, St Germain Elderflower, Maraschino Liquor, Lemon Juice.The table shared lots of good food. We noshed on staples like Crispy Calamari ($15) and a Brick Oven Tomato, Basil, Fresh Mozzarella Pizza ($11.50) to start. The Pork Shumai ($12) with a striking presentation featured gingery morsels of tender pork wrapped in hand pinched dumplings plated over Kecap Manis (a slightly sweet Indonesian soy sauce) along with a sweet chile sauce and topped with scallions. Less going for them presentation wise (or more like a bad photo on my part) but just as tasty are the Curry Lobster Rangoons ($9) a basket full of deep fried crispy triangles with pillowy cream cheese bites filled with tender lobster chunks and dashes of celery and chives. Oysters on the half shell ($2 ea.) were a beautifully shucked and fresh batch. Party favors were supplied just in time for the ball drop!For our final drinks, you can see Leah's above a Blueberry Basil Martini ($11.50) Pearl Blueberry Vodka, Blueberry Puree, Fresh Lemon, Fresh Basil. Mine was a Chocolate Espresso Martini ($11.50) Van Gogh Espresso Vodka, Godiva Dark Chocolate, Espresso. Dessert in liquid form to welcome 2011. P.S. The bathroom ceilings made my night. Well truthfully the great company and outstanding service did, but illuminated water filled ceilings are a close third. Full of sparkling energy in an intimate nightclub setting, with creative cocktails and delicious plates, 28 Degrees to celebrate the New Year was a blast.
The night was young even after the ball drop. There were drinks at Delux (pictured above) followed by one at Franklin Cafe followed by a party where Justin Bieber made an appearance!I know!! I hope you had yourself a fabulous time, however you chose to celebrate.