INGREDIENTS Christian Brothers Brandy, Orange Cointreau, house made sours mix, lemon twist, sugar on the rim, $10
Walking in, first impressions bring me back to an Ireland trip in the 1990s. Bartenders in smart ties, watching over a wall of near-perfect selections of gins, whiskeys, and scotch. Uisce (pronounced Ish-Kah, meaning “water” in Gaelic) has been a Bellingham favorite now for 11 years. As the wintertime weather turns afoul, a retreat to Uisca’s is the call. Today I order the Sidecar, a classic 1920s-era standard. The bartender tells me about the grand New Year’s parties and the pipe bands that roll through, and in almost the same sentence, details about small-batch distilling, and how a great Irish whiskey is made. As the alchemy of the Sidecar takes hold, I note the skilled balance the brandy pairs with the sours and the Cointreau, a nod to the skill of these bartenders. Wow. Owner Molly McGarry has set the perfect tone with this classic Irish atmosphere. Looking for a warm retreat, Uisce’s is open seven days a week. Friday and Saturday nights turn festive with live music.