Oh! Who lives in a pineapple under the sea? SpongeBob SquarePants! Ocean, the reincarnation of Mao that opened earlier this month, may be the bluest place in Denver. Not sad blue, but true blue. And with a bubbling sign, blue-tinged everything and a very upscale yet tranquil feeling, this restaurant is a sea change away from SpongeBob's Krusty Krab. For people-watchers and alcohol-swillers, the comfortable patio is an island paradise in the middle of Cherry Creek, complete with two large, shaded tables and cozy seating. It was here that I tried the Oceantini ($7), made with Absolut vodka, Blue Curaao, pineapple juice and a splash of Sprite. While the drink was a beautiful complement to its lazuline environs, it had that unfortunate Blue Curaao taste that always reminds me more of toilet-bowl cleaner than a Blue Hawaii. Fortunately, the signature drink at Ocean is the Pineapple Mojito ($7), made with Bacardi Coco rum, pineapple juice, Sprite, sugar, lime and, of course, mint. While the first sip was like drinking pineapple juice right after brushing my teeth, I quickly became a Titanic fan of this tropical, minty treat. If you're looking to get into the swim of things this summer, take the plunge at Ocean.
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