The Soda Jerk
The Soda Jerk is a must-see cocktail bar in Verona
Ok, you’re in Verona and you’ve done everything the websites tell you: You’ve seen the incredibly touristic and commercial Casa di Giulietta (and touched the boobs:), walked around the Piazza di Erbe, seen the Castelvecchio and visited the Duomo. You had a wonderful dinner and now what to drink, what to do? If you are a whisky/cocktail enthusiast The Soda Jerk should definitely be in your must-see list.
Recently I’ve been to Verona for a short business trip and Kevin Patnode, who is also an award winning bartender himself, recommended this great spot. Kevin was the winner of 2015 World Class Turkey and the owner of this cosy speakeasy, 2014 World Class 2nd Claudio Peri, was a jury in Istanbul when Kevin was elected. You can read my interview with Kevin here (Intro in Turkish, interview in English) http://meleklerinpayi.com/kevin-patnode-diageo-world-class/
Located in the city center within walking distance to all attractions and very close to the river, The Soda Jerk isn’t difficult to find. However like all speakeasy bars don’t expect much from the outside and just ring the bell on that black door. (at least they have a copper nametag). Soon someone will open the door with a great smile and welcome you in.
The Soda Jerk is quite small but very friendly and cosy place. When I go to cocktail bars like this, it’s always a good idea not to look at the menu first and ask the bartender. This time my ask was a “sour cocktail with whisky of their choice”. This much information is enough for most bartenders but this time I was asked bourbon, rye or scotch which is a good thing. Having seen the great selection of whiskies on the shelves, The Soda Jerk can offer a million different possibilites.
When I saw one of my favorite rye whiskies on the shelf, I asked for a cocktail with Rittenhouse Rye (I listed Rittenhouse Rye in my Top 20 Whiskies of 2015 list, please click). Skillfully prepared, my cocktail was a very balanced and refreshing combination of two of my favorite aromas: spicy rye whiskey and sourness/bitterness of pomegrante. It was simply perfect for a warm Verona evening!
My next ask was directly from the menu. Nico Grafite was a very smooth (maybe too smooth) Bulleit Bourbon based cocktail with a big flowery touch. Liked it a lot but the camomile aroma was a bit too much for me.
It was a great pleasure to meet and chat with the staff. Claudio and talked about his visits, working as World Class Competition jury and guest bartending in Sunset, Ulus 29, etc, some of the best bars in Istanbul. Claudio was kind to invite me behind his workstation to have this great photo.
The Soda Jerk can also be regarded as a “whisky bar” since it houses a great selection of scotch single malts, blends, bourbons and Japanese whiskies. I didn’t have much time and could have only one more drink and I was hesitating in between Macallan 7 and Hibiki 17. My love for Japanese whiskies took ever and I chose Hibiki; Hibiki 17 is one of my favorite blends ever and now that I’ve seen a bottle smiling at me, it would be a pity to miss. With its incredibly rich palate and minutes lasting finish, it was the perfect end to my night at the Soda Jerk.
Address: Vicolo Quadrelli, 5, 37129 Verona VR
Tel: 045 237 5108
22:00 – 04:00
The website https://www.thesodajerk.it/ doesn’t have much at the moment so you might want to check Trip Advisor https://www.tripadvisor.it/Attraction_Review-g187871-d12007102-Reviews-The_Soda_Jerk-Verona_Province_of_Verona_Veneto.html