UPDATE: The new opening date is May 18.
The menu at Arbella, the cocktail lounge spinoff from the folks behind Peruvian stalwart Tanta, feels a bit like a passport. Arbella opens on May 18 at 112 W. Grand Ave., and visitors have drink and food options from the Americas, Europe and Asia. Sorry, Africa.
For instance, anyone who's traveled to Spain knows about that country's love for gin and tonics made with a variety of flavor-infused gins. Arbella has a traditional and simple G&T on the menu, made with lemon, gin and tonic. Meanwhile, the Tempo Bello is made with grapefruit-infused gin with Luxardo and Tempus Fugit. Perhaps that grapefruit gin could be appropriated for other uses.
Leaving Europe, given Tanta's Peruvian roots, guests should assume there's at least one pisco drink. That's the Chilicano, made with cucumber-infused pisco, ginger beer and sugar. Mezcal is so hot right now, and there's three mezcal drinks on the menu, including the Sierra Madre (Pasilla mezcal, Antica Formula, chocolate bitters).
It would be too easy just to make a Singapore Sling to represent Asia. While they do offer the beverage, the Bombay Government Punch (rum, Batavia, Demerara syrup, lime juice) and Hokkaido (Funaguchi sake, CH gin, Chateau) provide more variety. All in all, there's 29 drinks on the menu, ranging from $13 to $16. Even Chicago's represented, with the Chicago Fire Extinguisher (Benriach heart of speyside, Luxardo Abano, smoked Angostura bitters).
There's also food to complement the drinks. The small bites include the familiar (lamb chop), the trendy (Korean fried chicken and ahi poke) and the reliable (egg rolls). Check out the full menu below.