Friday, May 17, 2013

The Lucky Lychee

The second stop after The Stone Rose Lounge was Benihana. I've wanted to go there for many years and now finally I had my chance. I was not disappointed. The food was amazing, as well as, the presentation and preparation. In terms of cocktails we decided to keep it light, preferring to have a couple of different Japanese beers with out meal. But we did have one cocktail that was called the Lucky Lychee. Momma-San was unfamiliar with the fruit so before I go into the cocktail, allow me to describe what a Lychee is.

The Engineered Lifestyles website in their entry for Lychee says that Lychee is translated from Chinese as "gift for a joyful life" (Click Here for a listing of some health benefits attributed to the Lychee fruit). According to Merriam-Webster dictionary a Lychee is:
the oval fruit of a Chinese tree (Litchi chinensis) of the soapberry family having a hard scaly reddish outer covering and sweet whitish edible flesh that surrounds a single large seed —called also lychee nut
As you can see in the image on the right, the fruit is the white almost translucent colored part of the fruit, with the brownish seed and the red outer coating surrounding it.

Now that we've established what the fruit looks like, here is what was in our cocktail:
The Lucky Lychee
Absolute Vodka
Sweet Lychee Puree
Fresh Muddled Limes and Mint
Lychee Fruit
The cocktail had a pale yellow color and on first taste it was sweet and very tasty. Momma-San seemed to like her cocktail. I also liked mine but it wasn't what I expected. I thought that it might have been a little drier since I had never tasted a lychee either in fruit or cocktail form. The bottom of the cocktail had a little Lychee fruit. I really couldn't taste the lime juice or the mint. So I would assume that the Lychee Puree overpowered all the other ingredients in the cocktail. I would have to see what the Lychee would taste like with a spirit such as Gin, Sake or Soju.

Considering that Banihana is located on 56th Street between 5th and 6th Avenues, the prices on the cocktails are very reasonable. The Lucky Lychee was only $10 dollars with the Specialty Cocktails in at the same price and the Signature Martinis in at $12. The priciest cocktail on the list was The Blue Ocean Punch Bowl which serves two or more people at $32. What's in the Blue Ocean? Well it is listed as Malibu Rum, Skyy Pineapple Vodka, Sake, Blue Curacao and a combination of tropical fruit juices.

Here is a picture of our Teppanyaki chef Mizen taking a bow after an entertaining show and a filling meal.

非常に多くの紅花をありがとう。次回まで。Domo Arrigato Benihana. We had an awesome time.

The next and last stop was to the classic old school New York City bar/lounge experience known as The Monkey Bar to see my good friend Michael Harper.

Until Then Happy Drinking,
Sisco Vanilla