OBON Sushi + Bar + Ramen is celebrating the beginning of autumn with a new cocktail menu.
But don’t expect the usual Japanese riffs on classic cocktails. The new creations are fun, imaginative, and thoughtful without trying to be classy or pretentious.
“It has been our goal to turn stuffy craft cocktail culture into something fun and accessible without sacrificing our integrity,” said Matthew Martinez, OBON bar manager. “This is the most culinary and obscurity-filled menu I’ve ever had the pleasure of working on.”
One prime example of accessibility is the Cat’s Milk ($10), which is served in a Japanese lucky cat mug and features vodka, soda water, and cereal milk made from your choice of Cocoa Puffs, Froot Loops, or Cap’n Crunch’s Peanut Butter Crunch.
The culinary-minded cocktails are significantly more complex.
“For example, the drink we call Kung Fud ($11) has a funky american produced Japanese spirit called shochu,” Martinez said. “This is a difficult ingredient to begin with, but by adding an unconventional ingredient, caramelized onion, with the addition of raspberry and malty oatmeal stout, we have a cocktail that is actually fit to be paired with food.”
The Space Oddity ($12) is marvel to gaze into. The squid ink makes it as dark as the deep cosmos, but edible pearl dust twinkles like little stars. Apple brandy, vodka, and lemon are deepened with bay leaf and balsamic plum.
Though Martinez has experimented with research and development for the new cocktail menu for months, he’s transitioning to helping open and manage the soon to open sister restaurant BIRD Southern Table & Bar. As a result, bartender Marlee Palmer will be taking over the bar at OBON.
“Marlee has been a sleeper in this town and this is the best opportunity I can find to showcase her genius.” Martinez said. “This menu is co-authored by her and the most ambitious we have ever attempted to date.”