Bar 888, located on the lobby level of the InterContinental San Francisco, is the nation's premiere grappa bar and offers one of the finest selections of grappa and grappa cocktails in the country. Offering over 120 hand-seleced grappas to taste, Bar 888 also offers an innovative selection of grappa-based cocktails, along with a carefully cultivated selection of wines, beers, and premium spirits. Some of the bar's most popular cocktails include the Italian Mojito with Marollo Honey Infused Grappa, mint sugar, lime juice and soda and the Grappa's Bay with Grappa Nardini Bianca, blood orange bay leaf infusion, maple syrup and lemon juice, as well as the The Cable Car, with Bar 888's twist on a classic featuring Arzente Brandy, triple sec, lemon and lime juice. Bar 888 is adjacent to the InterContinental Michelin-starred restaurant, Luce, which serves New American cuisine. A menu of light but satisfying bar bites at Bar 888 is offered from Luce's kitchen. Grappa is a fragrant grape-based pomace brandy of between 30% and 80% alcohol by volume (60 to 160 proof), of Italian origin. Literally "grape stalk", grappa is made by distilling pomace, grape residue (mainly the skins, but also stems and seeds) left over from winemaking after pressing. It was originally made to prevent waste by using leftovers at the end of the wine season. It quickly became comnmercialized, mass-produced, and sold worldwide. The flavor of grappa, like that of wine, depends on the type and quality of the grape used as well the specifics of the distillation process. In Italy, grappa is primarily served as a "digestivo" or after-drink. It's main purpose was to aid in the digestion of heavy meals. Grappa may also be added to espresso coffee to create a caffé corretto meaning corrected coffee. Another variation of this is the "ammazza caffé" (literally, "coffee-killer"): the espresso is drunk first, followed by a few ounces of grappa served in its own glass. In the Veneto, there is a rasentin: after finishing a cup of espresso with sugar, a few drops of grappa are poured into the nearly empty cup and swirled, and drunk down in one sip. Amont the most well-known producers of grappas are Nonino, Berta, Sibona, Nardini, Jacopo Poli, Domenis and Bepi Tosolini. While these grappas are produced in significant quantities and exported, there are many thousands of smaller local and regional grappas, all with distinct character. Most grappa is clear, indicating that it is an un-aged distillate, though some may retain very faint pigments from their original fruit pomace. Lately, aged grapps have become more common, and these take on a yellow or red-brown hue from the barrels in which they are stored.
888 Howard St.
SOMA, San Francisco, California 94103