Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Always Blue
If you happen to be in Cabo San Lucas, don’t be alarmed by the audible sounds of pleasure emanating from the vicinity of Plaza Bonita. It’s nothing illicit or illegal. No bordello has opened in the commercial triangle between Starbucks, Liverpool and the broad boardwalk promenade that fringes the Marina. No hedonistic group of free love advocates has chosen the plaza’s beautiful interior courtyard as the site of their annual convention.
No, those sounds you hear are from a crowd of long-time locals, exhaling gratefully after the first sip of an expertly shaken (or for purists, stirred) martini, or gasping delightedly as forks filled with pad thai noodles reach long deprived taste buds.
It’s not an orgy…not in the traditional sense…just the grand opening of the eagerly anticipated Blue Thai Martini Bar.
If martinis and Thai food seem like commonplace pleasures hardly worth getting worked up over, welcome to Cabo, where the sophisticated and the hopelessly provincial have always existed in close proximity.
Los Cabos is currently in the midst of the biggest building boom in its history, with a luxurious new crop of resorts filling out the coastline, from the far western shores of Cabo San Lucas to the East Cape that lies beyond the border of San José del Cabo. Some of the world’s most famous brands are moving in, including Nobu, Hard Rock, Ritz-Carlton and Four Seasons.
Each brings its own spectacular beachfront accommodations, its own pampering spas, and its own special access to world-class golf courses. That’s the minimum standard to compete with the international collection of luxury brands that are already here.
When it comes to the drinking and dining scene, however, Los Cabos might as well be lost in the dark ages, clinging to the farthest edge of a flat earth. For most of its tourist history, the area claimed little besides a homogenous batch of Mexican restaurants, with some mom and pop operations, some street corner taquerías, and a few marisquerías specializing in the superb local seafood.
It’s only in the last two decades that local restaurants have embraced a more international flavor, although this “global” outreach resulted mostly in an overabundance of Italian themed bistros and pizzerias, and a roughly equal number of Japanese inspired sushi restaurants. Good luck trying to find a pierogi or a po’ boy sandwich, much less pad thai or a bowl of Vietnamese style pho soup.
The Saturday, July 22 opening of Blue Thai Martini Bar is thus a big step forward towards a more…excuse the expression….cosmopolitan future. Yes, locals and visitors alike will still be able to get their fill of fresh fish tacos and salt-rimmed margaritas, but they’ll at least have the option of something a shade more sophisticated.
Much of the interest surrounding the grand opening of Blue Thai Martini Bar is based on the fact that it is unquestionably new; not just in the sense of a new bar and restaurant, but a new approach, a new atmosphere, a new style. There simply are no other Thai food restaurants or martini bars in Cabo San Lucas. The two ideas may not be completely original locally – others have dipped their proverbial toes in the water, albeit briefly – but Blue Thai is the first to fuse them together in one overarching concept. It feels fresh and exciting because it is.
Set in the heart of the downtown nightlife district, Blue Thai reimagines the classic Cabo party experience. Forget tequila shots, tacos and Sammy Hagar songs. Step into a world of colorful contrasts: where the menu is simple but the flavors never are, where strangers become friends around a communal fire pit, where jokes are told in both English and Spanish, where the ingredients are never cheap but the prices are never expensive, where the cast of characters always seems familiar but the stories never get old, where cold beers are always available but cocktails rule.
Like the old bridal saw – “something old, something new…” – Blue Thai balances the novelty of its concept with a bit of old-school seasoning, thanks to the well-established track record of its partners: long-time Cabo Blue owners Scott and Amanda Osborne, and local men-about-town Kirk McCormick and Eric Gausepohl. All four are veterans of the local drinking and dining scene; familiar faces to both the U.S. and Canadian expat crowd, as well as the seasonal visitors who return year after year.
This experience shows in their new endeavor. Blue Thai may be minty fresh, but it also showcases some of the signature elements that have made Cabo Blue a perennially popular downtown hangout since it opened in 2011.
Daily specials and live music are the most reliable ingredients in this now time-honored formula. Each day is expected to bring new budget-friendly pleasures at Blue Thai, from Thursday Ladies’ Night staples like 2x1 martinis, to the occasional $1 drink specials and discounted menu items. Televised sporting events can also be counted on, from UFC action to Monday Night Football; and weekends will bring live music from a host of local performers, ranging from romantic balladeers to rollicking rock n’ rollers.
As of today, Land’s End residents (however temporary) can sample and savor edamame, wontons, fresh basil rolls, pho soup, pad thai, red curry and masaman curry potatoes…not to mention Cosmopolitans, Lemon Drops, Espresso Martinis, Manhattans and a hundred other creative, icy cold martini style cocktails.
As of today, Blue Thai is open for lunch and dinner seven days a week, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; with delicious daily food and drink specials, and regular live music performances.
As of today, Los Cabos becomes a little bit newer, a little bit bluer, and quite a bit more interesting.
This was a long time coming…but now it’s here.
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Chris Sands and Michael L. Mattos
Blue Thai Martini Bar is located at Plaza Bonita in downtown Cabo San Lucas. To find out more about this eagerly awaited new drinking and dining spot, call (624) 143-7323, visit Blue Thai Martini Bar website, or go to their Facebook page