Pacific Heights.

The unofficial drink of Pacific Heights.

Dana Van Galder

Palmer’s Tavern at the corner of Fillmore and Clay seems to be just what this neighborhood was looking for. Only a few years old, an air of nostalgia fills the space run by brother’s Klaus and Albert Rainer. But don’t be fooled by the old school charm. There is a definite energy that fills Palmer’s and the locals know it. Patrons come for the elevated bar food and a truly happy Happy Hour. People who know how to make a cocktail staff the beautiful bar and they’re ready to share that knowledge.

Their take on the Vieux Carré is a perfect example. A French Quarter classic that has somehow flown under the radar, the name literally means “Old Square.” It’s a southern cousin to the Manhattan, so this is a strong drink, meant to be sipped. The Vieux Carré was invented in New Orleans. It has been refined in San Francisco. Specifically at Palmer’s Tavern.

Vieux Carré
3/4 ounce rye whiskey
3/4 ounce Cognac
3/4 ounce sweet vermouth
1 barspoon (1 teaspoon) Bénédictine liqueur
1 dash Peychaud’s Bitters
1 dash angostura bitters
Lemon twist, for garnish

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass and fill with ice. Stir well for 20 seconds and strain into an ice-filled Old Fashioned glass. Garnish with a cherry. Yields 1 cocktail and several bad decisions

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Visit the bar


Every city has a neighborhood bar. And inside that bar is a bartender who knows their stuff. They craft their drinks with care, precision and sometimes flair. And whether they create something original or give a new take on a classic, the neighborhood knows. This series will highlight bartenders creating drinks representing their neighborhoods. We’ll also give the recipes and directions. See how you do. Cheers!

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