A quick cure for headaches, heartaches or boredom is Sunday-afternoon cocktails at a laid-back, friendly bar with super-cool friends. I proved this theory on a recent sunny Sunday at the Pearl Bar (4216 Washington Ave., 713-868-5337) with new pals Lisa and Jenny. To get us started on the road to wellness, owner and cutie-pie Bridget suggested the front porch, free pizza and the bar's signature drink — a Pearl Martini, which is made with pearl onions. The vibe inside the bar and out was peaceful, a stark contrast to the weekend mayhem and standing-room-only crowd rocking the bar's recent reopening. The afternoon crowd was a mix of talkers, watchers, bikers, drinkers, the oh-so-hip and the whatevers. There was no problem fitting in at the Pearl. And after two martinis and some nonsensical conversation, there was no pain either.
1 1/2 ounces Ciroc vodka
Whiff of vermouth
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Chill a martini glass. Don't get impatient — the glass must be frosty. Mix vodka with a touch of vermouth over ice and then pour into glass. Garnish with three pearl onions.