There are just some things that go so well together. South Jazz Cafe and Pablo Batista are a prime example. South is the premier jazz venue in Philadelphia, and their food and cocktails are top notch. Pablo Batista is one of the finest jazz percussionists we have ever seen live, and whenever he preforms and South, it is a sellout.
Pablo preformed at South about a month ago, and the show we attended was amazing. The great thing about South is that there are typically two shows, one at 7 pm and one at 9 pm. This way, you have two chances to see you favorite artist, but get your tickets early. Many of the performances at South sellout quickly.
We usually have dinner or appetizers whenever we go to South. The food is fantastic. They feature southern classics, but with a twist. One thing that doesn’t change is the quality and taste. It’s always delicious. On this night, we started with a couple of cocktails. We ordered the Southern Hospitality, which featured Hendricks gin, rosemary and cranberry, and the NOLA punch, which featured their house rum punch, tropical flavors, and a hint of cayenne.
For our food order, we kept it simple and ordered their Prince Edward Island mussels, served in a coconut curry broth, and Texas toast with grilled herb butter. It was one of the best mussel dishes we have ever tasted. Prince Edward Island mussels are one of the best mussels you can order anywhere. They are large, and robust in flavor. The coconut curry broth was so good, but the kitchen didn’t over do the coconut flavor. It was really well balanced.
For dessert, we had to order South’s beignets, and a round of their Sazerac’s. You can’t get much more New Orleans than that! The beignets were probably the best outside of New Orleans that we’ve ever tasted. They were not too doughy or over-fried. The dipping sauce incorporated Cafe Du Monde, and it was out of this world. The Sazerac’s were perfectly crafted. The entire course made you feel like you were in New Orleans.
Now to the music! Pablo Batista is a local musician that you all really need to familiarize yourselves with. He is amazing. He brings so much spirit and energy to every performance. It’s no wonder why he sells out. He and his band brought the house down with their performance. A big plus is that after each show you can meet Pablo, and purchase his music, and talk with him. He is one of the friendliest people you will ever have the pleasure of meeting.
It was a perfect night of food, cocktails, and music. Again, I implore you, my readers. If you haven’t been to South yet, you really need to go. Even if it’s just for the food, please give them a try. Make sure you stay for one of the jazz shows. I guarantee that South will become your favorite jazz spot in Philadelphia.