Cocktails at the Jones Assembly
The Jones Assembly is a new bar, restaurant, and music venue which recently opened on the west end of Film Row. It is fair to say this is a popular place, and it already seems destined to be a staple of nighttime entertainment, which is no mean feat, given that it has been open only since mid-July. They put in a lot of time and effort on the specialty cocktail list, and it really paid off. We stopped in just after The Jones Assembly opened, and met with Charles Friedrichs, the Beverage Director and resident cocktail magician. Charles took us on a tour of the cocktail list, and we decided to do a he-said, she-said account of our boozy afternoon. If you want to test the strength of your relationship, try writing an article with your spouse or significant other. We are happy to report this thing did not result in a divorce.
One of us was dying to try the Frosé. It is a frozen drink made with Marques de Caceras Rosé, Gordon’s gin, lemon juice, and strawberry purée, and is topped off with a rosésoaked gummy (gummi) bear. As far as we know, this is the first frosé in OKC, and it is The Jones’ most popular drink.
Josh: I am not a fan of gooey blender drinks. This, however, was better than I was expecting. It is not as sweet as I thought it would be, and has a strawberry finish. This drink is a grown-up version of a strawberry daiquiri. I would probably not drink more than one, but this was refreshing on a hot day. Also, it is “gummi” bear, not “gummy” bear. Haribo makes the original, and they call it a gummi bear. That is all.
Kasey: If you are a fan of the show Younger, like I am, you’ve been wanting to try one of these trendy drinks for awhile. The sweetness of the strawberries coupled with the dry rosé gives you an even flavor in a fun frozen drink. I can already see the bachelorette parties with a table full of pink drinks topped with infused gummy bears. This drink is so popular that they can run out, so if you plan on trying different cocktails, make the Frosè your first. Also, if you aren’t referencing a certain brand, it’s “gummy”, not “gummi”. Some people like to pretend they are fancy.
Hong Kong Phooey
The next drink we tried was the Hong Kong Phooey. This drink has a good story. One of the owners of The Jones Assembly was in New York for the BAR 5-Day (a comprehensive spirits and mixology certification program) and met one of the bartenders from the Dead Rabbit, which is a bar in NYC that wins awards like World’s Best Bar 2016, and Best Bar in North America (four years in a row). The Dead Rabbit created the Hong Kong Phooey, and has given The Jones Assembly permission to make and sell them in Oklahoma City. Get ready, because the ingredient list for this drink is like the line to see Star Wars: long and weird. This cocktail is made from avocado-infused Cana Brava rum; Flor de Cana rum; Linie aquavit; lemon; grapefruit; avocado cane syrup; pistachio syrup; half and half; bay leaf tincture; and an absinthe rinse. They serve this over Sonic ice, and top it with nutmeg.
Josh: When I was watching Charles make this drink, and he was telling us the ingredients, I admit I was skeptical. You were probably wondering from reading the ingredients what the hell this thing tastes like. Let me tell you, it tastes like heaven. This was my favorite drink that we tried, and I have since purchased several of these for myself. It reminds me of a pina colada, but it is not really sweet at all. The finish is very clean, and you really don’t think you are drinking an alcoholic beverage. The thing is, you need to watch out, because these babies are strong. I want to have one with some snickerdoodle cookies.
Kasey: This is the most creative drink I’ve ever tried. I did not expect to like the Hong Kong Phooey. The ingredients sound crazy and it looks like milk on ice. I was pleasantly surprised. This drink is really tough to describe. It isn’t sweet, it’s light yet creamy. Somehow the combination of avocado, half and half, grapefruit, etc. blend excellently. I will order it again and I highly suggest you give it a try.
This is a tough job, but someone has to do it. The Disco Nap was the next drink in the parade of cocktails and is The Jones’ take on a margarita. It is made with Viejo Cancun plata (silver) tequila; Cointreau; lime, sage syrup, and blackberry. This may be the prettiest drink on the menu.
Josh: This drink smells like a fancy home store, in a good way. It is a little more tart than the average margarita, and drinking it reminds me of sitting outside on a summer night. The sage is not overwhelming, but you cannot miss it. Sage is an unexpected flavor in a margarita, but it is really a nice twist. Also, Kasey is color-blind. This drink is more of a red color.
Kasey: This drink is beautiful. It is purple in color, and topped with a blackberry. When someone orders a Disco Nap, the person next to them has to have one as well. Light and summery, with a deliciously tart flavor, this could be my summertime drink. FYI, I wouldn’t trust color descriptions from someone that accuses me of wearing orange every time I wear my salmon-colored dress.
The Jones 75 is a riff on a French 75, which is one of the world’s classic cocktails. The French 75 was created by the high priest of bartenders, Harry MacElhone, at his bar in Paris, which became Harry’s New York Bar. Yep, that’s the same bar Hemingway frequented, along with Rita Hayworth and Humphrey Bogart. Numerous classic cocktails were invented by Harry at his bar, including the Bloody Mary and the Sidecar. We could write a book about the place. Anyway, back to the French 75. It is typically made with gin, champagne, lemon juice, and sugar. The drink was created in 1915, and was so potent, Harry named it after the French 75mm artillery piece used in WWI, because that’s what you apparently felt like you were hit with after drinking one. The Jones’ version is made with Hella Smoked Chili bitters; Bittermen’s Hellfire Habañero Shrub bitters; lemon juice; simple syrup; Broker’s Strawberry and Jalapeño gin; Los Arcos sherry; and sparkling brut rosé.
Josh: As you can probably tell, this drink has a bunch of liquor and wine in it, but it also has a secondary kick from the peppers. I liked this drink, but would probably not want to have a bunch of them, so as not to end up (more) incoherent and babbling than I already am. One thing I like about the drinks here is that they tend not to be too sweet. This one is no exception. It is intriguing to me that my wife does not know these are strong. Could be interesting.
Kasey: This is a pretty pink drink that men as well as women need to try. Drier than a French 75, with a bit of spice at the end, I prefer the Jones 75 to the typical French 75. The strawberries and jalapeño combine nicely to give it a unique flavor, and it’s tough to feel more sophisticated than when you are drinking from a champagne flute.
For more drink reviews, check out the full article at edibleokc.com.