Don’t be afraid to be the pretentious dick the rest of the country thinks we are anyway. Continue reading
Southern transplants such as me-self have really only a handful of places to head to when we get homesick, and of those, Kendall Square’s Hungry Mother (named after the state park in Virginia) is hands down the snazziest—ain’t nothing getting served in this joint unless it passes through at least three dudes in bow ties. I’m a sucker for cheeky neckwear and lazy word associations, so it’s my 5 Drink lock.
Plus, they got boiled peanuts! Do you know how rad it is to be able to get decent boiled peanuts in New England? Or course you don’t. Northern scum.
DRINK 1 (BARTENDER’S CHOICE):
GENEVA CONVENTION ($12)
Our bartender, Ned, and my girlfriend, Christine, go way back, so he spares no time in whipping up the booziest thing they got—a Manhattan variation that features spirits from NATO member countries. “Lock our leaders in a room, give them a couple of these, and we’d have world peace.” Ned says. Ned is wise. I like Ned. Our neighbor and his very pregnant wife asks to try our boiled peanuts. Everything’s off to a great start.
DRINK 2 (BARTENDER’S MOM’S CHOICE):
CHATEAU DU TRIGNON VIOGNIER ($8)
Ned’s mother is the white wine sort, which makes this one pretty straightforward. However, broaching the subject of relatives and alcohol yields some fascinating stories of Ned’s bootlegging, bar-owning grandfather. Apparently he served only two drinks—an Old Fashioned, and something called a “Rum Fun” that’s for the ladies. I almost offer to buy the expecting mother one out of curiosity, but then I think about it for a second and realize why that’s a bad idea.
DRINK 3 (DRINK THAT REMINDS YOU OF YOUR CHILDHOOD:
FROM THE TANK ($7)
My early childhood was spent at my grandparents’ house in New Orleans, and my grandparents were cheap Germans. Nothing says “cheap Germans” like decent wine on a markdown, so we go with the box of red. T’ain’t bad. Ned and the dad-to-be neighbor have engaged each other in an animated conversation about wind turbines. This is exactly why I love drinking in Cambridge.
DRINK 4 (YOU MOM’S CHOICE):
FRENCH 75 ($11)
I go outside to call my mother, who doesn’t seem surprised in the slightest when I ask her to pick my next drink. I am, however, when she—the Bud Light sort—selects this potent champagne cocktail, which Christine turned her onto last time we were home. “It’s expensive, and it makes you feel terrible in the morning.” Ah. That’s more like it.
DRINK 5 (YOUR CHOICE):
NUMBER 21 ($12)
I like my after-dinner coffee and Christine likes her all-the-time whiskey, so we compromise with a drink that turns out to be literally a shot of both. Every time we do a Five Drink together, Christine manages some terrifying insight, and this is no different. “You’re like the functional alcoholic version of a hateful person.” Mom’d be proud.
233 CARDINAL MEDEIROS AVE.
Read some more 5 Drinks … if you dare.