Friday, May 6, 2011

El Carmen - Tequila Bar

In honor of Cinco de Mayo yesterday we went to El Carmen, a tequila bar in LA.  We went fairly early in the afternoon, around 4 so the party had not gotten started yet; there were only a few people at the bar.  When we walked in it felt like walking into a bar in Mexico.  It was dark inside the only light that came in was light from the open door or the ceiling skylight -- just enough to set the mood.  The decor was festive.  What was especially impressive was the Mexican wrestling masks and posters that lined the ceiling and walls.  The bar does a great job of getting you in the mood to drink some tequila.
So on to the tequila...overwhelmed doesn't even begin to describe how I felt when I opened the menu. It is massive. There are over 270 different kinds of tequilas for one to try.  They even have flights of tequila (like flights of wine) that start at just $25.  What a steal.  Since I was driving and we had other places to go we would only be getting one drink.  I got a shot of pineapple infused tequila on the rocks ($8) and gret gret got fresh cactus margarita on the rocks ($9).  I for one don't usually sip tequila so this was truly an experience.  The pineapple was faint and it was hard to drink especially because I love love love the taste of margaritas there was one right across from me.  It was interesting but I don't know if I'd get another shot as a drink.  The Fresh Cactus margarita on the other hand looked and tasted amazing.  It was bright magenta and had a fresh taste that was incredibly hydrating (that may be the best and worst part about margaritas).  I don't usually like fruity margaritas but this drink was great.  Needless to say Grete was feeling pretty good after having her drink and finishing half of mine :) 
Unfortunately we could only stay for one drink but the bartenders were so nice that we may just have to go back.  They also have food which I've heard is amazing.  If you're looking to get schooled on tequila's I'd make the trip to El Carmen.  If you do, take a DD or get a cab home.  It will be hard to just stay for one!

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