The Cat & Fiddle // Los Angeles, CA
When bar manager Eva Gardner isn’t touring the world playing bass guitar for pop sensation P!nk you can find her mixing up a cocktail or two at the Cat & Fiddle in Los Angeles. A family run business, the Cat & Fiddle was opened by Eva’s mother Paula Gardner and father, famed bassist Kim Gardner. A world traveler and libation master, we’re willing to bet Eva has some stories to tell us from behind the bar. With music and mixology coursing through Eva, the Cat & Fiddle has risen to the top of our list of need-to-visit bars.
When people think of The Cat & Fiddle which signature drink comes to mind?
Our clientele is very diverse, and our signature drinks are seasonal. But for the summer months, our most popular signature drinks are the Covent Garden Cocktail (muddled cucumber, kiwi vodka, fresh lime juice, splash of lemon-lime soda) and the Mary Poppins (Champagne with lavender essence and mint)
What would you recommend as the best beer for summer?
When customers are looking for something refreshing during the summer I’ll recommend the Hangar 24 Orange Wheat and Palomino Pale Ale.
As a Hollywood bar, do you find patrons ask for more health conscious or calorie-friendly drinks? How do you accommodate their requests?
There are certainly some patrons that are more health conscious than others—but specific calorie-friendly drink requests usually entail diet-cola or soda water as a mixer. Nothing too over the top.
What flavors and ingredients are your favorite to use this time of year?
During the summer I like using refreshing citrus fruits and herbs like mint, basil or rosemary. I’m also personally a big fan of cucumber so I really enjoy making drinks that use them!
Favorite new drink to make? Least favorite?
I always enjoy making the Covent Garden Cocktail.
I also like making the Cat Scratch Margarita and the Rosemary Lane (premium vodka shaken with lemonade and rosemary essence). I really enjoy being behind the bar so there really aren’t any drinks that are too much of a hassle. It’s all part of the experience!
What’s the one spirit you absolutely need behind your bar and why?
That’s a hard question to answer because everyone’s tastes are so different. We’ve got our hardcore scotch drinkers and our hardcore tequila drinkers. There are the martini lovers and the tropical cocktail fans. We need to have a wide variety of spirits to accommodate our diverse customers.
Any trends you’d like to see continued and/or introduced in 2012?
I am enjoying the comeback of the “classic” style cocktails such as the old-fashioned, blood and sand, brandy alexander, etc. It’s another example of popular trends coming back around as well as an appreciation of the history of mixology