I Can Eat 50 Eggs: East Side Show Room

In honor of Paul Newman and “Cool Hand Luke,” I’ll review 50 days of eggs from 50 different restaurants.
Day 41: East Side Show Room
1100 E. Sixth St. 467-4280, www.eastsideshowroom.com.
Hours: Bar open 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. daily. Kitchen open until 11 p.m. or midnight.
By Mike Sutter | Fed Man Walking | 02.10.12
I’m trading Luke for Rocky tonight and drinking my raw egg at East Side Show Room. In significant ways, chef Sonya Coté’s dollhouse of a restaurant and pre-Prohibition bar set the stage for the cocktail as a closely studied commodity in Austin. And it was here I drank my first egg-fortified cocktail, a Framboise Flip like a raspberry-bourbon smoothie.
But this report regards the Carthusian Flip, named for the monks who distill its primary ingredient, an 80-proof liqueur called Yellow Chartreuse infused with more aromatic herbs than a Fredericksburg gift shop. It’s shaken with Carpano Antica sweet vermouth, a little sugar and a dash of McCarthy’s whiskey from the bogs of mother Oregon. What makes this suitable for an egg series is a whole farm egg in the mix that both softens and deepens the flavors and gives the bartender a workout, because shaking eggs is a yellow hardhat away from being part of a road crew. I know this because Pam Pritchard at the Tigress Pub told me it’s the reason she can’t put egg drinks on the menu: The jackhammer workout would kill her.
The Carthusian Flip comes across like a lighthouse beam through the creamless eggnog fog, an illusion fostered by a nutmeg snowfall over the frothy crown. It’s the drink you’d start making at Thanksgiving-thirty, then keep making until the grass turned green again. The smoke from the Scotch-style single malt holds back until the end, igniting with medicinal embers to let you know that “flip” isn’t just the first four letters in “flippant.” But it’s among the letters in, “This little-bitty drink is $13? You’re flippin’ kidding me.” With whiskey and an egg, it’s the price of what Tipsy Texan’s David Alan would call “a balanced breakfast.”
(Photos by Mike Sutter © Fed Man Walking)
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