John Harmon brought the Harmon Rocket, a modified sport plane, to the world some years ago—well, technically he brought two. “He built the first one from scratch, starting with an RV IV kit and basically improving it so it performed better and climbed faster. Now, he puts together kits for people to purchase,” said his son, Michael Harmon. While John made himself a name in the flying industry, it took the help of his family members to bring the Rocket Shop Cafe to hungry Bakersfield residents.
Located at the Bakersfield Municipal Airport, the Harmons saw a need and didn’t hesitate to launch into action to fulfill it. “There was a restaurant here before, but it had burned down,” Michael, who is also the general manager, disclosed. “My father saw that people who had been going to the previous restaurant for ten to twenty years suddenly didn’t have a place to meet up. He wanted to replace what had been lost.” Thus, the aptly named Rocket Shop Cafe was born and has been flying high since.
There is an actual shop (the NASCAR Super Store) located within the restaurant—one that matches the décor, which is sports and aerial themed—with NASCAR paraphernalia for sale. Mostly polished steel, red, and black and white checker patterns can be seen throughout the restaurant, while the place is spacious and comfortable, overall.
With delicious fare and plenty of it (visit them on Taco Tuesday!), there is no denying that it’s a great place to grab a bite. But it’s also a great place to grab a drink!
The cocktail menu is impressive and includes some top-notch tastes, namely the Rocket Punch! “It is like a Long Island Iced Tea,” Michael elaborated, “but the raspberry liqueur sets it apart.” And he is right: this drink is a strong one, but the flavors of the raspberry and the sweet and sour with the Sprite make for a delightfully sweeter flavor than your average Long Island while packing its own special “punch.”
- 1/2 oz. Vodka
- 1/2 oz. Rum
- 1/2 oz. Tequila
- 1/2 oz. Raspberry Liqueur (like Chateau Monet or Chambord)
- Equal parts Sweet and Sour and Sprite
Fill a pint glass with ice. Pour liquor into glass in the order listed. Top off with sweet and sour and Sprite. Stir with a straw before serving and garnish with a Maraschino cherry. Drink and be launched into a taste-astic experience!
Rocket Shop Cafe
Year Established: 2007 • Located: 2000 S. Union Ave. • Happy Hour: Mon.-Fri., 3-6pm