Pablo Batista-A South Edition

Happy New Year to my all my readers! I hope you all had fun on New Year’s Eve! We certainly did, and I’ll be posting about that in my next article. Right after Christmas, we went to our favorite place to hear live jazz music, South Jazz Cafe. It’s only a 10-15 minute walk from where we live.We were really excited about going this night. Our good friend and famous master percussionist, Pablo Batista, was performing. We couldn’t wait! We’ve seen him perform at South before, and he is not only an amazing artist, but one of the friendliest you will ever meet.

When we arrived at South, we had a quick cocktail at the bar before being seated in the jazz cafe. The restaurant is gorgeous. It’s open and spacious with glass cabinetry everywhere. The jazz cafe is separate from the restaurant. It’s darker but cozy and inviting. Exactly what you would expect a jazz cafe to look like!

If you go to South, and you’d better, order anything off the menu, and I guarantee it will be delicious. There’s no doubt in the southern flair in the food, but it truly is delicious. We started with their blue crab toast which was served with lemon caper ravigote, avocado and peppadew relish. It was light and bursting with flavor. It’s one of our favorites. I had to try the buttermilk fried chicken, which had a hot honey drizzle and was served with buttermilk mashed potatoes and baby broccolini. It was amazing!

The chicken was perfectly fried, and inside it was juicy and tender. The potatoes and broccolini were also delicious. Eric ordered one of his favorites, the beef short ribs. It was barbecued and came with creamed collards and rosemary potatoes. It was absolutely amazing. You didn’t even need a knife to cut the beef. It was juicy and tender. It literally melted in your mouth. It may be one of the best short ribs in the city.

For drinks, Eric ordered the South Sazerac, which is a southern classic. They made it with Bulleit Rye, Salignac Cognac, Demerara sweet syrup, house blended bitters and absinthe mist. It was wonderful. I got the Creole Fashioned, which was made with creole shrub, and it too was wonderful. You really can’t go wrong with any of the drinks here.

We decided to spoil ourselves and order dessert, and I’m glad we did. We ordered their beignets and they were amazing! They were light and fluffy, not doughy or dense at all. They came with cinnamon, powdered sugar and an absolutely delicious Cafe Du Monde sauce. The sauce itself was incredible. If you go to South, you have to order this! Promise me you will!

A little time later, the lights dimmed, and Pablo Batista made his way to the stage and began his performance. He was absolutely amazing. You have to look him up and see him live. You won’t regret it; trust me on this! The featured singer with him this evening was Nina Rodriguez. She was wonderful. She had an amazing voice and the two of them just complemented each other perfectly. We were lucky to see them both this night. They did two performances on this evening, and both were sold out. I’m not surprised.

Here is a good New Year’s resolution for all of you. Support the arts in Philadelphia or wherever you live, and go listen to some great live music. Find a place that you’re comfortable with, and make it your own. May I suggest that you head to South. Happy New Year!


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