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Perry's Foray Into the World of Mixology

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Last night, in an event that would make any cocktail lover weep with joy, Perry's Steakhouse (9827 Katy Freeway, 832-358-9000) near Memorial City Mall debuted its new line of specialty martinis. From the kitchen to the cocktail, the fresh ingredients used in the new, summery drinks will please everyone from the ladies who lunch to the business suits that frequent the place -- and even a few that fall in between.

Hopping onto the artisan cocktail bandwagon, Perry's has taken what we all love from Anvil (and the other bars out there reinvigorating the current "mixology" movement underway in the U.S.) -- fresh ingredients, unique flavor combos and a well-trained bartender -- and brought it to the commercial market. Admittedly, some of the drinks are a bit sweeter and less alcoholic-tasting than the independently shaken drinks found around the country, but when you're catering to a wider audience, perhaps this is the gateway drug that will eventually lead them to greener, less commercial pastures (a comparison would be Fat Tire for craft beer drinkers).

All in all, the drinks are creative and exciting, and the fact that a seemingly stuffy (they were actually super-accommodating and friendly) steakhouse like Perry's is taking note shows the creative cocktail movement isn't dying down anytime soon.

A few of the new drinks, and my take on them:

Elderflower 75 (St. Germain Elderflower liqueur shaken with fresh lemon and topped with Moet & Chandon Imperial): The best of the bunch. Incredibly refreshing with just enough sweetness. Balanced out with a tart finish to prevent any overkill on the sugar.

Raspberry Crusta (fresh raspberries and lemon muddle with Ultimat vodka and Cruzan raspberry rum): Not a favorite, but the taste of tart raspberries and lemon right up front gives this drink a super-fresh taste. The dry ice in the glass is a bit kitschy and unnecessary on any day that isn't Halloween, but it keeps the drink cold.

Cardamom Pear (fresh pears and cardamom pods muddled and shaken with Chopin vodka): Coming in at a close second, this drink truly tastes inspired. The intense spice in the beginning kicks off the drink with an exotic feel, and the slushy pear pulp makes for a great textural element hardly found in any non-frozen cocktail. Paired with Perry's signature pork chop -- whoa, mama -- it is fantastic. No need for applesauce when you've got these two together.

To try any of their new line of cocktails, visit Perry's Memorial City location on Monday when the new menu is officially available.

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