Drink Here Now: 5 Places to Sip This Week


1. Gitane's New Bar Menu: Changes are afoot at the Financial District's Gitane, which is transforming its menu into a seasonal rotation through different Spanish cuisines (including those of Seville, Andalusia, and Valencia) with the help of new chef Patrick Kelly, who's joining wife Bridget Batson in the kitchen. There are also big changes at the bar, including an updated beer program with options like Linden Street amber ale and Scrimshaw pilsner, and sherry-centric cocktails ($12) like the Smoking Lady (vodka, amontillado sherry, Laphroaig, honey, lemon, sage) and the Doblon (Yamazaki single malt, fino sherry, lemon, honey syrup). If you're feeling peckish, a new bar menu features bites like rabbit and jamon serrano croquettes ($8 small, $15 large) or suckling pig confit with red endive and orange marmalade ($16). And don't miss the surprisingly gorgeous restroom, which was recently named one of the ten best in America (really!) (Tuesday-Wednesday, 5:30 pm-12 am; Thursday-Saturday, 5:30 pm-1 am, at Gitane, 6 Claude Lane, Financial District.) 

2. Rock Bar's New Cocktail Menu: The Rock Bar in La Lengua is also offering a revamped cocktail menu, with options like the Earnest Diamond (Angostura rum, maraschino liqueur, champagne, diamond elixir, grapefruit; $8) and the Donkey Show (reposado tequila, pear liqueur, allspice dram, cider, mole; $9). Drinkers can pair their cocktail with Cajun takeout fare from across-the-street sister spot the Front Porch (try the fried chicken), and shuffleboard bowling, an Aquarius Records-stocked jukebox, and silent-film screenings on Wednesdays keep things lively. (Monday-Saturday, 4 pm-2 am; Sunday, 10 am-2 am, at Rock Bar, 80 29th St., Bernal Heights/La Lengua.) 

3. Happy Hour at 50 Mason Social House: With a prime location on the border between the Tenderloin and Union Square, 50 Mason's new happy hour should be a draw for local office types looking to unwind after work. Weeknight drinkers can enjoy $2 Kirin and Ichiban drafts (and $1 off all other draft brews), $5 glasses of house red and white wine and wine flights (and $1 off all other wines), 25% off bottles of wine, and $3 "Mason Mule" cocktails. Live acoustic musicians play every night save Wednesday, when a DJ spins. (Tuesday-Friday, 5-7 pm, at 50 Mason Social House, 50 Mason St., Union Square.) 

4. Press Club's Charity Initiatives: As holiday-season celebrations get underway, it's important to remember those who might not be as fortunate, which is why Press Club is offering two promotions to benefit people in need. This week, they're donating 10% of all sales to the Hurricane Sandy Red Cross fund, and next week, they'll give a free glass of sparkling wine to anyone who brings in a new, unwrapped toy. Chef Chris Borges also has some new food offerings, like grilled short ribs with Tuscan kale ($14) and a mushroom pizzetta with burrata and arugula ($12). (Sandy donations through Sunday, November 25; Toy drive party: Tuesday, November 27, 4-10 pm, at Press Club, 20 Yerba Buena Lane, SOMA.) 

5. Viva la Moustacherie!: November is coming to a close, and so is Movember, the annual mustache-centric campaign to raise money for men's health causes. To pay tribute to the many men who grew mustaches for the cause (and the women who donned fake ones), Wix Lounge and OwnTown are throwing a party with free beer, wine, appetizers, and desserts, as well as a mustache-centric photobooth with plenty of props. RSVP here. (Tuesday, November 27, 6-9 pm, at Wix Lounge, 2601 Mission St., Mission.) 

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