Damned Spot ($15)
A lighter sipper of whiskey and ginger beer (Famous Grouse; Fentiman's) with lime and a bleeding drip of Peychaud's staining the top.
Blonde in Peril ($15)
A refreshing Lillet cocktail with vodka, Grand Marnier, lemon, and—we'll just let the menu say it, because we love it—"a pool of crimson Port down by the drain."
A tequila-based drink made warm and rich with Trinidadian rum and sherry, orange curaçao and chocolate bitters to finish.
Before the Party
Sleep Bowmore Punch ($50, about 6 drinks' worth; $100, about 9 drinks' worth)
"It's complex, but surprisingly refreshing considering weight of the ingredients," says Wondrich. With a base of Bowmore single malt ("a nice medium-bodied peaty Scotch from Islay—which itself is very desolate and witchy"), plus orange curaçao, Wondrich's orange-demerara shrub, and Madiera "which makes it extra-rich, and it all ends up being quite lovely." Garnished tableside with lemon and grated nutmeg.
Gallow Green Punch ($100, about 9 drinks' worth)
"I do a wicked flaming absinthe punch," Wondrich chuckled. An impressive measure of absinthe is poured into the bowl, perfuming the air immediately, and stirred with Delord Blanche white Armagnac before it's set alight, extinguished with the lemon shrub, then finished and iced down. "It starts with fire and ends with ice… like the universe." It's unmistakably absinthe, though that's not all you taste; "the Armagnac is bright and clean, not overpowering, and really balances it out."
Pulled brisket toast ($17)
Three toasts, each with a tomato jam and horseradish aioli.
With jams, dried fruits, grapes, chunks of candied pecans.
Smoked trout salad ($14)
Chunks of smoked fish tossed in with bitter greens, grapes, and a mustard vinaigrette.
Atop the space they used to create the McKittrick Hotel, the team found an overgrown roof space with—really—train tracks running down the middle. (The trolley car on the other side of the bar was not up here along with it.)