Bartenders share their favorite cocktail books—beyond the classics.
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While the world of craft cocktails has evolved in recent years, bartenders still pay constant respect to classic drinks. And many of those classics come to us through cocktail books—some dating back to the Prohibition era or before.
No one knows a city's bars like the talented men and women who work behind them. So we're going straight to the source, asking bartenders about their own favorite drinking establishments in Philly, from dive bars to fancy cocktail spots.
Cocktails can make a party, but when you're hosting, you don't want to muddle or shake every drink to order. So we asked bartenders across the country: What's a great summer drink for a crowd?
We're seeing more and more small-scale distillers popping up around the country (and the world!)—but of course, not every newbie with a pot still is making delicious booze quite yet. Bartenders get a chance to taste all sorts of spirits, so we asked for their tips on the craft distillers that are really making great stuff.
The Manhattan Cocktail Classic launched its fifth year with their annual booze-fueled, black-tie gala at the New York Public Library. Along with a nasty hangover, we managed to pick up several great cocktail ideas.
Are more expensive spirits usually better than the bottom-shelf stuff? Sure. But price doesn't always indicate true quality, and sometimes, we just don't have the budget for lots of fancy spirits. We asked bartenders around the country: Which bottles do you find great substitutes for more expensive ingredients?
No home bar will ever be as well-stocked as a professional one. But there are some bottles that can let you make dozens of drinks, instantly upping your cocktail game.
A lot of us cocktail enthusiasts are occasional at-home bartenders, trying our own hands at mixing up drinks. But we could all do with a few tips from the pros. We asked bartenders across the country: What do most amateur bartenders get wrong?
Well spirits are, in a way, the bar's default: when you ask for a vodka-soda or rum and Coke, it's the well vodka or well rum that usually ends up in your drink.
We asked bartenders across the country: How do you prevent (or, barring that, cure) a hangover?
Fernet and Cynar, Negronis and Boulevardiers—bitter amari, and the cocktails that showcase them, are all the rage these days. But to drinkers unaccustomed to those powerfully bitter flavors, a first sip can be off-putting.
There are obvious perks to being a bartender—but, just as with any job, there are definitely downsides.
As with all professions, bartenders have insight into their workplaces that the rest of us can't match. But given that the rest of us hang out at their workplace, we might benefit from learning a tip or two. We asked bartenders across the country: What's one bartender secret that customers don't know?
For every intricate cocktail that ends up on a menu at your favorite bar, odds are there were a dozen more drinks that didn't make the cut—some outright failures.
Many of the best bartenders are constantly designing new drinks, revisiting old ones, and revamping the bar's menu. But every once in a while, there's a concoction that feels truly exciting.
Would you date a bartender? For some, it comes down to one big risk. If you get together with the bartender at your favorite neighborhood joint, and then things don't work out, you may have to break up with the bar. And there are only so many great bars out there.
Ever had a terrible Valentine's Day date? We bet that these bartenders have witnessed worse from behind the bar.
At Serious Drinks, we see more flavored spirits than you could possibly imagine. Green tea vodka. Cinnamon-roll vodka. Cherry-flavored SoCo. We'd just about always prefer a fresh infusion to a bottled concoction, but we're always looking for a diamond in the rough. So we asked a number of bartenders: Are there any flavored spirits that you actually use?
Some bartenders fuel their shifts with espresso —others, with beer and shots of Fernet. What is your bartender drinking behind the bar? We asked, they answered.