Maison Premiere: Oysters, Absinthe, and Bliss
Hi Everyone! Today's review is about Maison Premiere. I've actually been wanting to come here since the summer of 2013, when I first moved into my Ktown apartment. I never came because I didn't know anyone that wanted to eat raw oysters with me :( Two years later, I now have at least 6 friends who are my dedicated oyster-buddies (you guys know who you are). We now spend our nights scavenging the city for $1 oysters and happy hour beers and cocktails. Out of all of the one's we've tried, Maison Premiere is one of the coolest.
I came here for happy hour brunch (11AM-1PM) with 2 devoted oyster comrades, Jen and Lucia. We sat in their outdoor patio, which was absolutely PRISTINE. We sat under this huge pergola covered in foliage with chairs and tables that seemed to have come from some romanticized Parisian lawn. Very badass.
Anyway, this place specializes in two things: absinthe and oysters. So, given that it was 11AM, we had to get some absinthe cocktails. I got the Walcott Express. I think Jen and Lucia got the Absinthe Colada and the The Great Bambino. My cocktail was made with Germain Robin, Sapin 55, Fresh Lime, Lime Cordial, and Mint. Germain Robin is the absinthe used in this concoction. Typically, the base spirit of absinthe is brandy distilled using wine. However, the distillery used a mix of apple and honey to create the base. Then, the spirit was blended with water and aromatic herbs like wormwood, rose geranium, and hyssop.
The Germain Robin has about 45 ABV, whereas most absinthe is over 60 ABV. This causes this absinthe to be lighter and smooth in flavor with a subdued sweetness. Surprisingly, this cocktail gets its green color from the Sapin 55, which is a piney and minty liqueur. And, lastly, the lime cordial is basically sweetened lime juice. All in all, the drink was herbaceous, tangy, and impeccable... like my pecs.
As for the oysters, we got a mix of a few different clean and crisp ones. Oysters usually come from either the east coast or the west coast.
The coolest part about oysters is that, similar to wine, they acquire flavor based on the surrounding environment. The cold eastern waters gives the oysters a brinier taste with a chewy texture. West coast oysters, on the other hand, are more "sweet and creamy". This means that the oyster is less salty and more smooth/plump in texture. Needless to say, whatever Maison Premiere gave us, it was exactly what we needed to accompany our cocktails. We also ordered two servings of sea urchin (see first picture above). It's probably one of the most photogenic sea urchin platings I've seen. The sea urchin was so creamy and practically detonated with flavor.