Best Vintage Martini Houston 2005 - Warren's Inn
Back when NoDo was just called downtown, and before Main Street had a rail system -- or even more than one nightclub -- there was Warren's Inn. And there was the venerable Jose Serna, one of this city's most memorable, classy and distinguished bartenders. For more than 30 years, Serna, clad in white shirt and black bow tie, served politicians, visiting celebs, downtown suits, college kids and just regular Joes who frequented the Market Square gem. The gregarious Serna poured generously, especially when serving a Bombay Sapphire martini. His martinis became ridiculously hot commodities when the swinger scene re-emerged in the late '90s and word got around that Serna mixed the best. Sadly, he committed suicide in 2000 after a battle with incurable cancer, but his ring-a-ding-ding presence is still felt at the bar. Stop by the always-crowded joint, order a Sapphire or vodka martini, pop some Sinatra on the jukebox and offer a private toast to Jose. Somewhere, he'll be raising his glass back at ya.