The tableside dish is typically just that -- an actual food-filled dish assembled near a restaurant table.
Think of an appetizer or entree or salad made before the eager eyes of the patron who ordered it, typically with much flair and drama and some colorful commentary by the restaurant staffer. Think of The Famous Original Spinning Salad Bowl at Lawry's The Prime Rib in Beverly Hills or Cherries Jubilee at Pico Rivera's own Dal Rae.
Think of a cocktail made this way... Wait. You can't? Yeah, it's pretty darn uncommon.
Now SoCaler dine-outers should add a drink to the made-tableside list, one that comes with a hefty dose of carnival-style whimsy and pure pink-o-sity. It's the new Tableside Cotton Candy Martini at Barton G., and it has made its beverage-kapow bow just in time for the region's county fair season.
Which, of course, is the cotton-candy-est time of year.
The cocktail is for the grown-ups, as the "martini" part of the name implies, and its table-close show involves a cloud of cotton candy sitting in a large martini glass. Nope, the sipper isn't required to try and sip the libation through the cotton candy. Rather a server pours a mixture of citrus vodka, ruby red grapefruit juice, orange juice, and Cointreau over the bubblegum-flavored candy floss.
Then fooooom: The cotton candy is magically gone, or, rather, is now liquified inside the drink itself.
Melting cotton candy and a bit of magical smoke are part of the show. A show, we should add, that is custom-made for two. The Tableside Cotton Candy Martini is described by the whimsical West Hollywood eatery as "shareable."
The price tag is twenty two dollars. And, true, while you can stroll up to most bars and watch your martini get shaken or margarita poured or cosmopolitan stirred, having a cocktail-cool show at the side of your table is the far rarer experience.
Though sipping a martini filled with melty cotton candy might even be rarer than that.