what:The Russian Bride
where: Goat’s, 2017 Devine St.
After a few hours of tailgating and drinking beers prior to the University of South Carolina football game last week, I was in the mood for something different altogether. Some cooler confines, a little quiet, and something to sip on that didn’t come in a can. Thank heavens for Goat’s. Although it’s tucked away in the heart of Five Points, once I stepped inside, the only way I could even tell that the Gamecocks were playing was the tiny TV above the bar. Sound off, of course. Now for my drink. Goat’s offers four full pages of cocktails on their menu ranging from a hardcore classic straight out of Raymond Chandler, like the Beefeater Gimlet with just gin and lime juice, to the ChocoDelux-tini, which incorporates multiple flavored vodkas including one that is, shudder, whipped cream flavored. I was definitely looking for something easier-drinking than the former and less bachelorette party than the latter. Bartender Sasha Gregov pointed me to one of his new creations on the menu, dubbed the Russian Bride by the waitstaff because Gregov is Russian, of course. It piqued my interest because of its use of Pallani Raspicello, a raspberry liquor that is deep red and syrupy sweet but here is sparingly shaken with some rum and lemon vodka. The drink goes down easy with a nice transition from the sweet of the raspberry to an undercurrent of sour lemon and finally a hint of coconut at the end, with none outshining the other. If only the game had turned out as lovely. — Tug Baker