Gallery: Ask a Bartender: What Liquor Would You Like to Learn More About?

Mezcal
Mezcal
"Mezcal—the more I learn the less I feel like I know. I'd love to plan a trip and go straight to the source to really dive deep into how it is made." — Blake Landis (Cinco)
White Whiskey
White Whiskey
"White Whiskey." — Sara Morgan Strom (Coast Beach Cafe & Bar)
Grappa
Grappa
"I've started to learn a bit about Grappa, but it's an area that I haven't fully tackled and would really love to learn more about and how to use it in cocktails." — Pamela Wiznitzer (Dead Rabbit)
Cachaca
Cachaca
"Cachaca." — Milan Mijatovic (Little Market Brasserie)
Mexican Spirits
Mexican Spirits
"The other distilled spirits from Mexico. Sotol, raicilla, and bacanore." — Sarah Mengoni (South Water Kitchen)
Scotch
Scotch
"Scotch. Some knowledge is mandatory for bartenders. Where something comes from, how it is made, how it is consumed, why it began. With Scotch, I want to go a lot deeper. I would love to understand it the way the men and women who make it understand it. What it means to the culture, the people, the way of life it influences. Smelling the peat, honoring the centuries of tradition. My heritage is mostly Scottish, so that has something to do with it too, I'm sure." — Dan Andruss (312 Chicago)
Sotol
Sotol
"Sotol, sometimes referred to as the Northern cousin of tequila, is a spirit I would like to learn more about. It is produced from a wild agave in Chihuahua, Mexico. Currently there isn't any Sotol available in the state of PA, so I have yet to even try it." — Chris Mann (Distrito)
Tequila
Tequila
"It's all about tequila. Mezcal is on there as well, which is just a cousin of tequila. I am just discovering how versatile the spirit is." — Roger Bailey (Filini Bar and Restaurant)
Armagnac
Armagnac
"Armagnac." — David Welch (Lincoln Restaurant & Sunshine Tavern)
Wine
Wine
"I'd have to say wine—because the more you know about it, the more there is to know about it." — John McCarthy (Greenwich Project)
Armagnac
Armagnac
"I'd love to go to Armagnac and actually see the process from growing grapes to distillation and bottling. It's such a unique spirit and really underated." — Brian Means (Fifth Floor)
Aquavit
Aquavit
"Aquavit. People either love it or hate it, but whichever side they're on, their reactions are so profound, so visceral, that it's almost as if they're talking about an old lover. Also, I hear it's a Viking drink. Vikings are awesome." — Chad Musick (Sip Tasting Room and Rooftop Lounge)
Sherry
Sherry
"Sherry. I think there are more details and rules associated with sherry than any other spirit or liqueur." — Carlos Yturria (E&O Asian Kitchen)
Rum
Rum
"Rum. I'd like to learn more about it while drinking it on a beach somewhere...like, right now." — Michael Lay (Restaurant 1833)
Gin
Gin
"I would like to delve more deeply into gin. There are so many different flavoring agents and styles of the spirit. Just fascinating to me. (Also, I like to drink gin.)" — Chino Lee (Departure Restaurant)
Tequila or Mezcal
Tequila or Mezcal
"I'd have to say either tequila or mezcal. With all the great products hitting the market right now, showcasing agave from different regions, elevations, and harvesting seasons, there's just a lot of newly available information about all of this, and I would love to have a mastery of it." — John Henderson (Scholars, Tavern Road)
Cachaca
Cachaca
"Cachaca. It's one of my favorites to use but I don't know much about it. Next year, I'm planning a trip to Brazil and hope to learn more on some excursions." — Miri Kolici (Upstairs at the Kimberly Hotel)
Calvados and Cognac
Calvados and Cognac
"I am always learning more about spirits, especially the new brands that are constantly hitting the market. Calvados and cognac are two types I would love to learn more about. The fruit used to distill, the aging and classifications are very similar to that of wine, thus can get a bit complicated." — Vincent Stipo (Vernick Food & Drink)
Mezcal
Mezcal
"I'm really interested in learning more about Mezcal, which is becoming a favorite spirit to work with." — Elizabeth Powell (Liberty Bar)
Cognac
Cognac
"Cognac." —Kevin Diedrich (Jasper's Corner Tap & Kitchen)
Tequila
Tequila
"I'd like to learn more about tequila; I understand it intellectually, can explain it technically, but until you walk the land and smell the fermentation and taste the new make off the still you don't really understand the nature of a spirit." —Mike Ryan (Sable)
Chartreuse
Chartreuse
"Chartreuse is something I would like to learn more about. Besides the very basic information shared about this liqueur, there is a world of secrets regarding its recipe and production that I would love to be let in on." — Griffin Elliott (Sepia)
Gentian
Gentian
"I'd like to know more about Gentian liqueurs." — Justin Fairweather (Evelyn Drinkery)
Rum
Rum
"I would say Rum.  I do know a fair amount, but there are many different processes and different countries that produce it. The more I know, the more I know I don't know." — Nate Howell (Cusp Dining & Drinks)
Chartreuse
Chartreuse
"Green and yellow chartreuse. Green chartreuse is essential in my favorite drink, The Last Word. It's mystery only known by a handful of people. I would love to know all the ingredients that go into that fine French product!" — Phil Greyshock (Pizzeria Ortica)