PX speakeasy is located in Old Town Alexandria on Columbus St. next to Eamonn’s. Don’t look for a sign because you won’t find one. You will know you have found it when you see a nondescript door to a townhouse with a blue porch light. Reservations are recommended and a jacket is required for men. PX is a great place to go for truly remarkable cocktails, or to impress a date.
As soon as you walk into PX you are transported to another era. You feel as though you just stepped into a speakeasy during the 1920′s. It’s dimly lit by candles and beautiful antique chandeliers. The space is small and intimate and can accommodate 40 or so people at any given time. PX was named one of Food & Wine’s 50 Best Bars in America and it is the brainchild of prodigy Todd Thrasher. The name PX is an abbreviation for a French expression “Persona Extraordinaire”. I knew right away I was in for an extraordinary experience.
The drinks have whimsical names like “The Arsonist Has Oddly Shaped Feet” and “Granny is Drunk and is Flirting with the Frenchman”. An extreme attention to detail is paid to these perfectly balanced and imaginative cocktails. They are made in beautiful crystal stirring glasses and the juices are all hand squeezed. There are eyedroppers full of exotic tincture and ingredients and a slew of aromatic bitters rest on the bars, all of them are homemade and change with the seasons. Todd goes so far as to get a monthly shipment of quinine so he can make his own tonic.
My favorite cocktail was the “Thousand Degrees Hot and Not a Drop of Water”. This hand crafted libation featured Tequila El Jimador Reposado that was mixed with maple syrup water and lime juice. It was finished off with a homemade Fresno chili soda and I sipped it through a metal straw. It was earthy and packed a good dose of heat but it wasn’t heavy on the citrus or sugar. It was excellent and one of the most interesting cocktails I have ever had the pleasure of drinking.
The Arsonist Has Oddly Shaped Feet was quite good as well. It was made with Bulleit Rye, pickled pears, pear bitters, Riesling and vanilla. It was light and a tad sweet and the pear and whiskey flavors married well.
Of course the bartenders in this establishment are of a high caliber and you feel comfortable describing to the bartender what you are in the mood for and leaving yourself in their capable hands. I was thoroughly impressed with all of the cocktails I tried that night.
Credit: Featured photo was courtesy from PX Facebook page.