15 Romolo -- which is tucked up on Romolo Place, half a steep block above Broadway -- has recently undergone a facelift and change of management, and it's a refreshingly warm and civilized joint in the otherwise frat-douchey environs of North Beach. New managing partners Scott Baird and Aaron Smith aren't fucking around with the drink menu, which features both adventurous concoctions and creative takes on classics. For summer sipping we'd highly recommend The Yellow Bicycle, a mix of yellow chartreuse, St. Germaine, lemon and champagne. But the drink that really floated our boats was the Rio Grande, which Scott created for a friend of his, Justin Simoneaux (now of the Moss Room), while the two were working at Coco500. Says Scott:
He drinks bourbon, I drink tequila. For a bit of fun one night, I decided to mix the two, using Reposado tequila which is almost always aged in bourbon casks, with both lime and lemon and some agave syrup. I poured the drink into shot glasses and we both were pleasantly surprised. The drink has evolved, with a kosher salt, organic cane sugar and triple chili rim, and the simple syrup is now spiked with a touch of our ginger for a slightly spicy effect.