On Sunday, the Pegu Club celebrated its 5th anniversary, inviting folks to come drink and talk and reminisce. Yea, I'm not sure how else you really would celebrate a bar's birthday except to drink and talk about the good times had in the place.
The true thing of beauty for the evening was the special anniversary "All-Stars" menu. It was a fantastic glimpse into the drinks, and people who made Pegu Club what it is today.
The resulting list of 20-something or so drinks served as an ethnographic document of sorts, detailing some of the names drink styles of the New York cocktail scene of the past five years. Of course I had to ask if I could keep a copy. (I'm kind of a sentimental pack rat like that. All of you guys out there who have given me menus, I most probably have them squirreled away somewhere. Maybe I'll bequeath it all to MOTAC when I die.)
Just as someone could read in the Bible that "Abraham begat Isaac; and Isaac begat Jacob; and Jacob begat Judah and his brethren," one could read how in 2005 Phil Ward begat the Cornwall Negroni, in 2006 Brian Miller begat the 19th Century, while in 2007 Jim Meehan begat the Improved Norwegian Cock-Tail...and so on and so forth.
I overheard John Deragon comment that each item on the menu took him back to specific memories of drinking at Pegu and I even caught myself trying to piece together with Kenta Goto how we first met. Neither of us could really piece it together. All I remember is we were introduced. I'm sure if I trawled through the archives of this blog, I can figure that out, but you know what, let's just leave it nebulous. It makes for a better story. Like we're age old pals or something.
Explanation for the following photo and why I love it, with apologies to Phil Ward, because this photo is not flattering to him. When I asked for a group photo, Mr. Ward tried to lean his way out of it only to have Brian Miller pull him back in a second before the flash went off. Hence the disgruntled look of a cat that got wet on Phil's face.