Sunday, December 1, 2013
My husband and I went to Ground Round the weekend after Halloween and had a blast. As soon as I tasted their brandy old fashioneds, I knew I was going to be back to review them, and I was.
We went on an early Monday evening and bellied up to the bar. I ordered a brandy old fashioned sour, not denoting a garnish. She grabbed a fancy cognac snifter and proceeded to add several dashes of bitters, a squeeze of sugar from a plastic bottle of loose sugar (think ketchup bottle) and a splash of soda. She then swirled the concoction and let it airate for a few seconds before adding a shovel of ice. Then came a generous two shots of Christian Brothers brandy and the drink was topped off with soda. No garnish was added.
This drink tasted like brandy and I was not disappointed by that. It was missing the aromatics of the fruit and could have used more bitters and maybe sugar (gasp!). I think ultimately the reason this drink did not meet perfection was because they were using a cognac glass that was probably 14-16 oz and a recipe for a 6-8 oz lowball old fashioned glass. From my perspective, they doubled the alcohol but not the core ingredients that make an old fashioned not a brandy with soda. I actually enjoyed getting the drink in a glass that I don't typically imbibe with and it makes them stand out from the other 50+ bars in this city!
The overall the size of the drink in relation to the $3.50 price makes this an absolute steal. I was very pleased with the taste (I was just being picky above), the glass, the amount of brandy as well was the fun sports feel of the bar and the view of the river.
On a side note, we have enjoyed both of our meals at Ground Round and has been added to our list of favorite Oshkosh eateries, the only non-local chain on the list! For that, the Ground Round receives a high 4-olive rating. Add more bitters & sugar (optional: muddling of fruit) and this becomes a 5-olive drink!
Edit as of 3.22.2014: The glass is 22 oz and the $3.50 price is happy hour price.
Rating (out of 5 olives)
Ground Round at River's Edge
1 North Main Street