From its walls festooned with Hollywood memorabilia to a menu full classic diner eats, 59’s is pretty much how you imagine Japan imagines America. But kitsch aside and you’ve got a place that makes a damn good burger and some amazing drinks, courtesy of the manager Mr. Takafumi. Standing before a well-stocked bar, the knowledgeable Taka, as his friends call him, is able to make just about anything your thirsty mind can dream.
The Drink: Melonhead
While my dream was to finally get a decent Old Fashioned in this town, Taka had something else in mind, something new. From the kitchen he brought out a nice melon, which, given Japanese prices, must have cost him 5000 yen. He then proceeded to cut it up and place the meat in a blender. To that he added rum, Midori, peach liqueur and crushed ice, blended them together, poured the effervescent concoction in a martini glass and garnished it with a tropical flower.
Now, as anyone who has sat beside me in a bar knows I like my liquor two ways, whiskey or Jack. So, I was more than just a little doubtful when faced with this unnamed mélange, but I had a job to do. Though I was initially overwhelmed by its sweet smoothie-like consistency, the fresh fruit flavors reminded me of eating cold watermelon on a hot summer day but with rum. When I asked Taka what he was going to call this time-machine in a glass, he gave me the honor of naming it myself. And as I was really feeling the rum, and the vodka rickey chaser, you, too, can enjoy a Melonhead (which the RSDB assures me is not a racial slur) all summer long.