The Watering Hole: Marjorie, 1412 E. Union, (206) 441-9842
Victoria Holt The man from Marjorie pours it out.
The Atmosphere: Tucked in a courtyard flanked by a newish condo development, Marjorie is an unexpected jewel in a neighborhood of extremes. Some call this area of Capitol Hill "The Crossroads", where the Undre Arms spawns underground art and Seattle's financially endowed spawn the occasional new Ferrari. Open in its new location (it used to be in Belltown) for just over six months, Marjorie has become a beacon for locals - a small space, both bright and intimate.The Barkeep: Marjorie's longtime bartender Ben Sherwood tends lovingly to a full house of people looking for both food and drink. Marjorie's size and situation - about 40 seats, 10 of which are at the bar - mean sitting at the bar is just as lovely/likely as sitting at one if its tables. Faced with the prospect of First Calling a somewhat clueless yet very thirsty web editor and her stepmother--preoccupied by the purchasing tendencies of a birthday-celebrating husband, one hour late, last seen perusing the wares at the aforementioned Ferrari dealership--Ben jumped right in at putting both at ease. Not concerned with showing off skills, Ben only wanted to make the ladies happy, responding to the demand "make me something amazing, and fast!" with a question, "what helps make a drink amazing to you?" The result: a drink for one, red wine for the other.
The Drink: The answer to Ben's question regarding the drink was something tart, a little bitter, and certainly bubbly. What was returned was a lovely take on The Kirby, a featured drink on Marjorie's cocktail list. A seasonal drink intended as a refresher on warm summer days, its popularity ensures a placement, with some seasonal fluctuations, year-round (perhaps in winter, named The Kirby #2). Created in tandem with distiller Kirby Kallas-Lewis, it's a blend of Plymouth gin, grapefruit, lemon, grapefruit bitters, absinthe, and to bubble the heart of a certain person, a touch of prosecco.
The Verdict: A table forfeited due to the Ferrari-oglings of a certain person led this party to remain at Ben's bar enjoying a lot of wine, a few more Kirby cocktails, and a lovely selection of plates from the kitchen. Ever resourceful, Ben managed a full house of imbibers while gracefully enduring the chaos created by the crossroads of two simple women and one Ferrari-mad man.
Spied: A birthday boy in forbidden territory.