The Rendezvous and Jewel Box Theater welcomes a new batch of cocktails that recall the venues fabled past as an authentic film exchange and underground speakeasy.
“After we found the 1920’s Rendezvous menu we decided to make modern twists on the food that was served back then. We’ve taken that theme to our cocktails and did the same after researching what would have been served in The Grotto in the twenties. Everyone is doing prohibition cocktails, we aren’t jumping on that bandwagon, we are returning to our roots,” Said Jane Kaplan, owner.
In time-honored Rendezvous fashion, the new cocktails are a play on classic and favorite films:
‘The Swarm’ as the name suggest is a classic Bees Knees named after 1978 Michael Caine flick is created with honey, simple syrup, fresh squeezed lemon, Sound Spirits Old Tom Gin, and a lemon twist.
‘Car RAMROD’ is a classic Flip affectionately named after the pistol whipping, shenanigan inducing highway patrol duo in the film “Super Troopers.” This cocktail is made with a full egg, Jameson whiskey, maple syrup, Benedictine, and a candied bacon garnish. Meow.
‘Sling Blade’ is a Singapore Sling not to be reckoned with. This cocktail is mixed with cucumber infused Hendricks Gin, Cherry Heering, Benedictine, lime juice, a dash of Angostura bitters with an orange and cherry for a garnish. The ‘sling’ itself predates the cocktail, being comprised of only spirits, water and sugar. When the cocktail was first introduced it was referred to as a ‘bittered sling’ because of the addition of bitters.
‘Weekend at Bernies’ stays true to its namesake as a Corpse Reviver #2, a classic Prohibition era staple featuring dry gin, Cointreau, Lillet Blanc, fresh lemon juice, and a drop of absinthe.
Just like in The Rendezvous and Jewel Box Theater of the past, this Belltown haunt still has an outlaw bent and just like in the twenties. The drinks are meant for the artist and the worker, the everyman. Also featured on the cocktail menu are returning film-inspired Prohibition classics such as:
‘Airplane!’ The Rendezvous’ take on the classic Aviation, using local Oola gin, Maraschino liqueur, Crème de Violette and fresh lemon juice.
‘A Sidecar Named Desire’ is a prohibition-era cocktail crafted with Cognac, Grand Marnier and lemon juice.
‘The French (75) Connection’ is as smooth as Gene Hackman’s demeanor with Hendricks Gin, lemon juice and champagne.
Building on a History
The Rendezvous and Jewel Box Theater are located in the heart of Seattle’s historic “Film Row,” which began when silent-era film exchanges sprouted up between Second and Third avenues in the early 1900’s. The Jewel Box, a cozy theater located inside the Rendezvous, hosted films while the restaurant catered to visiting Hollywood royalty who stayed across the street, at the William Tell Hotel. The Jewel Box is one of the last remaining intact screening rooms from the “Film Row” era.
In 1927, MGM Studio’s grand offices were located on the building’s top floor embellished with original leather walls as well as a hidden staircase that then led to the underground speakeasy. Today, the speakeasy is affectionately known as “The Grotto” and serves as a comedy venue and host to private parties. The Grotto features shows from punk rock to The Comedy Womb, a weekly female focused open mic night.
Despite the passage of time, the space at 2322 2nd Avenue exudes its storied history in décor as well as in spirit—indeed, long-time bartenders swear the speakeasy’s long-passed patrons occasionally roam the halls. Disembodied music is even often to be heard in peculiar corners of The Rendezvous late at night.
For more information on events, shows, and specials at The Rendezvous and Jewel Box Theater please visit http://www.facebook.com/SeattleRendezvous or follow us on Instagram TheRendezvous_Seattle and Twitter @RendezvousSea.