We get a peek at the drinks—and the jerky—at the new San Francisco cocktail bar from the team behind Range.
'first look' on Serious Eats
"Punch is a loan word from the Hindi language, from the word meaning five," explains Will Duncan, the beverage manager at Punch House. "Punch is a balance of five flavors; it always balances strong, weak, bitter, sour, and sweet." This is the first of many lessons in history and mixology to be learned at Punch House, Chicago's first punch-focused cocktail bar, owned by the team behind The Empty Bottle and Longman & Eagle.
At The Revel Room in Wicker Park, you'll find cocktails (including a Blood and Sand on tap), more than 30 canned beers, and a hidden back-room library.
A sherry-based daiquiri, four different gin and tonics, and more at the new Toro spinoff in Chelsea, with Spanish-inspired food from the chefs behind Boston's Clio, Uni, and Coppa.
At Bergerac in SOMA (just down the street from Bar Agricole), Russell Davis sprays a mezcal drink with a moonshine tobacco tincture for aroma, flavors another with a Vadouvan spice blend, and attempts to "take barrel aging too far" by serving local bourbon finished in a barrel that has aged a Manhattan cocktail.
"All of our food items are intended to be paired directly with our cocktails, wine, and beer," explains Sother Teague, the creative force behind the cocktails at the new Cobble Hill spot Bergen Hill. The fish-focused restaurant and cocktail bar is owned by Ravi DeRossi, who's known for Death & Co., Mayahuel, Amor y Amargo, Gin Palace, and others.
Darren Crawford of Bourbon & Branch describes the cocktail list he's designed at The Vestry—the restaurant and bar next door to the popular Valencia Street music venue The Chapel—as "a little bit of everything, something for everybody."
At the newly reopened Henry, a Liquor Bar in the Hudson Hotel in Columbus Circle, Londoner Ryan Chetiyawardana has launched a seasonal menu that makes use of a sous vide circulator and rotary evaporator.
"We went on all of these distillery tours, and we got tired of standing around at the end drinking warm spirits out of a plastic pill glass," explained Mark Lucas, co-owner of CH Distillery. That's why he and his partner Tremaine Atkinson have created a space where you can sip fresh spirits, distilled right behind the bar, the way they were meant to be tasted: in cocktails.
Longoria, who previously manned the bar at Aziza, is no stranger to incorporating flavors and techniques often used by chefs into his cocktails. Check out the drinks he's making at Acquerello's new spinoff restaurant, right this way.
The bar at La Urbana in San Francisco is already stocked with 56 different mezcals, with another dozen or so on the way.
"The story of Grace O'Malley is one I've been wanting to tell for a long time," says co-owner Danny McDonald of the inspiration behind the just-opened Murray Hill spot, Grace Gaelic Hospitality. "This is our tribute to the Pirate Queen of Ireland, her life's story, and to the history of Gaelic hospitality."
To pair with fish sauce wings, five-spice pig ear strips, and sour pork riblets, you'll find fruit-forward drinks—developed primarily by Andy Ricker and Dave Kaufman.
With the bar perched right on the north shore of Lake Union, bar consultant Maggie Savarino says she and Westward bar manager Lea Fronterhouse tailored the cocktails to be what someone wants to drink while they're on the water.
A peek at the new cocktails from Thor Bergquist at the Lower East Side hotspot Experimental Cocktail Club.
On her first try, Percy's & Co. general manager Lauren Thompson described the bar as what would happen if a juice bar and a real bar had a baby. Actually, it is more like what would happen if a Chinese herbalist's shop and a farmers' market had a baby, which was then plopped down to play in a slow Southern bar.
Guests enter Three Dots through a back alley, climb down a dark staircase (with a wall full of skulls staring creepily) and into the tropical basement bar. Half of the menu is made up of classic tiki cocktails, the rest are the creations of Paul McGee, formerly of The Whistler.
A peek at Kyle Webster's cocktails at Expatriate, which he recently opened with his wife, chef Naomi Pomeroy of Beast.
At this new Lincoln Park diner, Brad Rubin is serving barrel-aged root beer, plus milkshakes, phosphates, and egg creams made with refurbished antique equipment.
I can't say I ever expected to find a particularly forward-thinking cocktail program in the Meatpacking District. But I also can't say I ever expected to find Aaron Polsky in the Meatpacking District. Polsky, who you may recognize from his work at Neta or Amor y Amargo, was brought in to develop a cocktail program that was "cutting-edge and delicious," he told us, "but could also handle the volume of a 200-seat restaurant."