"There's your winner, right there. Chantal," Reality Steve barked over the clinking martini glasses and lady chatter last night at the watch party for the season premiere of The Bachelor at Bailey's Prime Plus. Reality Steve is that annoying friend who talks over the entire reality show as you're trying to watch it yourself. He's the one who somehow has every fact about every one of the 14 previous seasons committed to memory. He's obsessed. But, unlike your annoying friend, Reality Steve has fans. Steve writes a blog that recaps episodes of The Bachelor and other reality shows. Not only that, he offers spoilers and even predicts the winner of the entire season based on "inside information." And apparently, it's those spoilers that'll get 100 or so women to come out Bailey's Prime Plus on a Monday night. That and half-priced booze and bar food.
Bailey's specials for the night included half-priced signature cocktails, house wines, domestic beer and well drinks as well as half off some delicious appetizers.
My friend and I tried several of the specialty drinks (you know, for reporting purposes), including the passion star martini, the Bailey's cosmotini, the cucumber martini, the dill fizz and the house-made mulled wine. Yeah, that's a lot of adult beverages. I'm not gonna lie -- I'm not a The Bachelor superfan, and if I was gonna make it through the entire two-hour fake-boob parade premiere ("Will Brad Womack finally find true love again, finally?? Probably maybe not! But, will he bang a bunch of hookers and pay them in roses? Definitely! You can't wait to hate these girls!"), I was gonna need several booze-filled distractions.
And Bailey's gladly served them right up. When I asked our waitress, Hannah, what the weirdest drink on the specialty drinks menu was, she immediately said the passion star martini. On the menu, it's described as "a tropical cocktail with a twist." What showed up was a pineapple-y concoction that tasted really good, but looked like this:
OK, so I was a little weirded out by the dry ice. As I freeze-burned the crap out of my hand by dumbly holding the base of the dry-ice-filled martini glass, a girl across from our table glared at the drink and said, "That doesn't look healthy." It might have been diseased, but it was definitely yummy. It's the kind of drink you punish someone with. If there's someone at your table who's being an ass, order them the passion star martini: the dunce hat of drinks.
The Bailey's cosmotini tasted like a regular cosmo, only it also arrived bubbling like something out of Ghostbusters 2. After that adventure, we were ready for some food.
The Filetini (cubes of medium-rare steak on top of a pile of creamy mashed potatoes and gravy, served in a martini glass. The perfect carb-load for sobering up) and the cherry tomato & fresh mozzarella bruschetta (lightly toasted bread piled high with tomatoes and mozzarella) gave off a '90s wedding-reception-appetizer vibe presentation-wise, but tasted much more elegant.
Leigh Bailey, director of business development at Bailey's and planner of the watch party, "couldn't be happier" about how the event turned out. She said that based on the success of this event, Bailey's plans to have a finale-watching party at the end of the season. Of all the drinks on the menu, Leigh recommends the house-made mulled wine. She told us just to ask for "the hot wine." It's a really nice alternative to a cider if you're in the mood for a warm, wintry buzz.
Mid-sip of the dill fizz (which was good, allegedly had juniper, dill and elder flower in it, but just tasted like a vodka and tonic to me. Maybe there was a mix-up at the bar? Either that, or the bartender was like, "That shit sounds gross. I'm making her a vodka tonic instead."), I saw Reality Steve's waxed eyebrows go up all the way across the room, and he cackled as Chantal O'Brien (Steve's prediction for winning the season) slapped the bachelor in the face. "That's her! She wins! I'm 100 percent sure." (He's gotta keep saying he's 100 percent sure because he was wrong last season.)
Tanner Pope (from The Bachelorette Season 5) was also in attendance. "Which one's he?" I asked a fan. "He's the guy from DeAnna's season who barfed getting out of the limo. Yeah. He has a beard now." Some people might call barfing on a reality show embarrassing. I call it bad-ass. It's not like you're going to find real love (hell, you can't even find real tits) on one of these shows, so you might as well find the open bar. Cheers, Tanner. And cheers to you for being less fake-tanned than Reality Steve. It's winter.
Tanner was working the lady-packed room, but nobody worked it as hard as Tyrone. I knew that this chick-centric event would inevitably have a few dudes just there trolling for chicks, but I could never have expected mid-40s Tyrone From India, wearing a suit, telling chicks he works for the CIA and not-so-casually whipping out his cash-filled wallet. (Did he think we were actually whores? Awesome!) Tyrone had many smooth moves, including but not limited to: busting out a digital camera from the '90s to show me pictures of himself with "his friend" Rick Perry, telling me I'm a bobblehead (I think he was negging me) and then inviting me to a threesome after I told him I was married with a kid. I sincerely hope he's the next The Bachelor.
If you're a fan of The Bachelor who's willing to admit that in a public setting, or just a fan of half-priced dinner, you should definitely go to Bailey's for the finale watch party. They served up some seriously tasty food, some fun specialty drinks and a good time. Just be sure to bring your mace in case of a creepy Tyrone-sighting.
Bailey's Prime Plus 8160 Park Lane 214-750-8100