Little Branch: The Sugar Plum
This cocktail started with Fifty Pounds London Gin, mixed with grapefruit juice and house-made grenadine. Heavy on the gin, this drink had all the aroma of the Fifty Pounds lightly tempered by the bitterness and acid of the grapefruit.
Death and Co.: The Bitterbender
Death and Co. of East Village fame was the only bar to serve a whiskey drink last night. They mixed Elijah Craig 12 year bourbon with cocoa nib-infused Campari, plus ginger syrup, raspberries, lemon juice, and sparkling wine. The result was pretty to look at, but pulled its weight in complexity and booziness.
The Wayland: Garden Margarita and Orange Jewel
The Wayland was the only bar serving two drinks last night. Their savory Garden Margarita is a best-seller at their bar, made with Lunazul Blanco Tequila, kale and ginger juice, agave nectar, lime, and chili salt. They also served a mezcal cocktail, made with Bauchant orange liqueur, Los Amantes Mezcal, Cynar, lemon, and basil. We appreciated a break from some of the sweeter drinks with these offerings from The Wayland.
Rum House: Petit Milan
Served in bottles, this effervescent cocktail was made with Flor de Caña rum, Cynar, lemon juice, and soda water.
Pouring Ribbons: The Dove Tail
This drink was made with Los Amantes Mezcal, lemon juice, raspberry syrup, fortified wine, and Peychauds bitters. Sweet and pretty, with a slight funk at the end, this was actually one of the stiffer drinks of the night.
Employees Only: The Escalante
The gentlemen at Employees Only were shaking up a tart and tangy cocktail called the Escalante, featuring Campari and American Harvest vodka with grapefruit and lime juice, plus agave nectar to sweeten it slightly.
Bagatelle: The Turnaround
Bagatelle's cocktail featured Chopin Potato Vodka, bittersweet Aperol, orange bitters and peel, along with Pavan liqueur, which is made with muscat grapes and orange blossoms. It reminded us a bit of sweet marmalade.