The Drink: Piscolada Martini

The Location: Merkádo Kitchen, 1443 P St. NW, (202) 299-0018

The Price: $8.50

The Buzz: Giving into a seafood craving, I plan to stop by the Whole Foods in Logan Circle after work, since my Giant in Shaw often smells like someone hid some shrimp in forgotten places. Knowing that even on a full stomach I can’t get out of that damn store without spending at least $40 (and I’m only shopping for two), I stop across the street at Merkádo to put something in my growling belly. I sit at a table on the sidewalk in the suffocating humidity and look for all things refreshing. Even though seafood is in my near future, I can’t resist ordering the seviche, and I choose the Piscolada Martini to start things off. Since Merkádo is billed as a Latin grill, it seems appropriate to drink a Peruvian pisco, Latin America’s brandy. Here, they shake it with pineapple juice and a Mayan coconut liquor and sink a Maraschino cherry in the bottom. It’s something you could drink at a resort in the Bahamas without batting an eye, and on this sticky evening, it feels just about right. The pineapple is the dominating flavor, and the drink has a nice sweet/tangy combo going on. And in the world of specialty cocktails, $8.50 is downright reasonable, which makes me feel a little better about the wad of cash I’m about to drop for a basket of groceries.