Fortified Lemonade ($10)
Made with local Hangar One vodka, fresh lemon juice, clover honey, and orgeat syrup courtesy of a bartender at La Descarga, this clean refresher "is our answer to people who would drink lemon drops,” says Livigni. To play on the honey in the cocktail, Livigni adds a garnish of bee pollen, which he says acts as an aphrodisiac.
Herradura Anjeo House Barrel Aged Cocktail ($12)
Livigni recently won the Herradura cocktail competition at L.A.’s SoHo house for the non-barrel aged version of this cocktail, which arose out of his attempts to create a tequila Manhattan. After finding that the tequila wasn’t spicy enough to deal with vermouth, Livigni added Aperol to “spread the high notes of the grapefruit.” Once he had the flavors right, he says, “It seemed like it could only get better if we let those kids get to know each other a little better,” so he lets them age for 30 days in a 9-½ gallon Baby Bourbon barrel from Tuthilltown. The barrel brings in serious vanilla flavor, which Livigni then accentuates by adding a couple of dashes of Fee Brothers peach bitters.
Gin & Tonic Experiment ($10)
Though Blue Cow offers a more traditional G&T (elevated with housemade tonic water), Livigni is particularly pumped about this remixed version of the drink, which riffs on the sweet and bitter botanicals of tonic’s signature flavor without using quinine. Livigni muddles red bell pepper and cucumber, which he combines with peppery Right Gin from Sweden and a bit of funky, grassy cane syrup from Martinique. A final sprinkle of black pepper on top opens up the palate.
Cherry Ricky Soda ($10)
Livigni calls this elixir of cherry lambic, Hangar One lime vodka, and genever a cross between a Cosmo and a vodka soda. Tart and summery, the lambic has really small bubbles. “So the effervescence is really present in your mouth,” he explains.
Old Fashioned on Tap ($12)
With its soft, round, inviting flavor, Livigni calls the traditional Old Fashioned a “gateway stirred cocktail,” so he wanted the drink to be front and center on his menu. But with the happy hour rush, he needed a way to deliver the goods to thirsty worker bees quickly. And so the Blue Cow team mixes praline-infused Woodford whiskey, vanilla bean simple syrup, and pecan bitters in advance of service, serving it from a nine-liter beer keg. Since it’s served straight up, they dilute the drink in advance—after extensive experimentation, they settled on 25% water as the magic ratio.
Allagash Curieux Cocktail ($9)
“Taking into consideration the demographic here, [owner Mario Del Pero] wanted beer," says Livigni. "The beer cocktail was my way to create something that I like." Livigni used one of his favorite brews, the Allagash Curieux from Maine, to create this rich cocktail with a slightly bitter complexity. He combines the beer with apple juice, Canadian Spicebox Whisky, and Gran Classico for a cutting dry finish.