But Common Law (126 SW 2nd Ave.) is one mighty exception. At a little wood-topped bar tucked away behind the Pine Street entrance, the bar has six stools and a drink menu—created by Hat Yai's Alan Akwai—with cocktails that stand up to any in town.
The Turmeric Pick-Me-Up ($10) is a frothy alcoholic curry, mixing turmeric-infused gin with coconut milk and St. Germain for a drink that feels impossibly light—a good-natured joke told in liquid form. The Negative Cycle ($10) combines dry amontillado with German honey-liqueur Bärenjäger and herbal Bonal to make an ethereally boozy take on toffee-rich Werther's Original. It's ingenious.
(Related: How Pine Street Market Disappoints)
If you don't want to pay more than $5 for a drink, there's Rosenstadt and Pfriem on tap and a rotating liquor punch. And while the Euro-Asian fusion food from Paley's alum Patrick McKee wasn't designed as bar fare, that brioche-bunned burger ($10) is nonetheless the richest pub burger in town, with salty fried onions adding fat and texture to the rich, sweet spice of the green curry aioli. Top the medium-rare beef with pork ($2) and an egg ($1) and you'll be dizzy with umami.
The only shame is if you don't catch one of those barstools, you're stuck carting your drinks to the cramped picnic tables, drinking a lovely cocktail next to some ungrateful 8-year-old having sword fights with rotisserie chicken bones.
(Related: Five to try at Pine Street Market)