Craft & Commerce
Craft & Commerce, Downtown San Diego
Downtown San Diego on a Sunday afternoon is a wonderful sight. The people, the ocean, the buildings, the crowded bars, and restaurants; it gives me a rush. I love the city life, but apparently, not everyone does. I hosted my monthly meetup at Craft & Commerce and the morning of, about 8 people canceled last minute, #fail. Luckily, my favorite regulars still showed and we had a great time!
I was slightly skeptical about the Queen Mary, as it can only be made with gin or tequila. I am not a fan of gin and tequila typically leads to unfortunate decisions. Craft & Commerce does not serve vodka in their establishment. Our wonderful waitress explained to us that they feel vodka “waters” down the bloody mary. Now, I’m not sure I one hundred percent agree with that, but I can understand where they are coming from. With that being said, having my first bloody mary with gin has completely changed my feelings about it. The gin truly does elevate the taste and complexity of the bloody mary!
Dubbed “The Queen Mary” the bloody is served in a classically etched high-ball glass and is dark red in color. The garnish is super fun and quirky, much like the decor of Craft & Commerce; Complete with mirrors with quotes on them, taxidermy mountain lions, rams, bears in glass boxes, and the Kool-Aid man mural in the bathroom. Traditional toppers like lemon and lime wedges, olives and a sweet gherkin pickle hold up the Korean BBQ chicken wing. The sauce on the wing is exquisite; sweet and rich in flavor. The chicken wing is juicy and fried to perfection. The garnish is rounded out with a heaping sprig of cilantro and a tiny umbrella you would typically find in a tropical drink, for some added fun and color in the presentation.
The mix was incredibly refined and unique, consisting of complex layers. The cilantro sprig in my glass along with the fresh lime juice complimented the floral taste that the gin brought to the bloody. I was blown away by how rewarding the gin was to my taste buds! The bloody was spicy; Tabasco, pepper, chili paste and freshly grated horseradish make a statement but do not overpower the overall taste. Chili paste adds spice also adds a sweetness along with the ketchup and the Worcestershire sauce. Finally, the glass was rimmed with celery salt.
The Queen Mary from Craft & Commerce is top notch. The food was delicious as well. I split the blueberry pancakes and veggie omelet with others from the group and it was one of the best decisions I’ve made in a while! I highly recommend Craft and Commerce and The Queen Mary!