I'll have the bread pudding -- hold the bread. A male friend of mine recently told me that, knowing what he knows about men, he'd eat only two Ritz crackers a day if he were a woman. During lunch at Bambino's with a girlfriend, we took his misogynistic advice to heart and had a riveting discussion about the evils of simple carbohydrates while we studied a menu featuring Atkins-diet-busting pasta and pizza. The two of us passed on the fabulous homemade bread with gorgonzola-cheese butter, and I ordered a focaccia sandwich -- minus the focaccia. As instructed by every diet manual both of us have ever read (three digits' worth of them), we put down our forks between bites and left six bites on each plate. Finished (or close enough) with my high-protein meal, I headed off to the restroom after telling my friend to get me whatever she was having for a post-lunch beverage. Though I thought that meant a cup of coffee, I returned to a Cherry Squirt Martini ($6) made with Three Olives Cherry Vodka, lemonade and a splash of soda. It tasted like a cherry snow cone. "I prefer my carbohydrates served in a martini glass," my friend said. We quickly moved from our lunch table to the comfortable bar -- which we now refer to as "the dessert bar" -- and noticed that there are eight more flavors of Three Olives, including grape, green apple and chocolate. We're already planning our next lunch with a flavored-vodka dessert. Two Ritz crackers? I'll take two Cherry Squirt Martinis any day.
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