Amor y Amargo
This East Village shrine to bitters and amari — herbal Italian digestifs — provides a bounty for those looking to try something unique. Let the bartenders guide you through a range of options, from a straight taste of your amaro of choice served neat to eight mixed together in the Eight Amaro Sazerac, a mix of amari, Peychaud’s Bitters, Bittermens Orange Cream Citrate in a glass rinsed with Green Chartreuse.
If the last time you had a frozen drink was spring break or at a 7-Eleven, get ready to have your socks knocked off at the Tippler. Tad Carducci and Paul Tanguay, the Tippling Brothers, have taken two classic cocktails along with one of their own creations, and given them the frozen treatment. Try the Snow-Groni or the Spazerac — extra chilly versions of the Negroni and the Sazerac, respectively.
If gin is more your speed, head to Whitehall. The team behind Mary Queen of Scots and Highlands goes British at this Greenwich Village bar and restaurant, giving gin the star treatment on their cocktail list. Be sure to check the chalkboard above the bar and ask for a taste of the Mother’s Ruin of the day, a daily gin selection, served on its own or with Fever Tree tonic. They select lesser-known gins, often produced in small batches, so it’s not likely to be something you’ve tasted in the past.
As lovely as it is sitting in Maison Premiere’s backyard sipping rose in the summertime, it’s just as lovely, and arguably more cozy, sipping on mulled wine inside. The Mull it Over is a mix of red wine, Lillet Rouge, cinnamon syrup lemon, and Becherovka, a bitter herbal liqueur from the Czech Republic that you may not have yet stumbled upon in your boozy travels. It lends dark honey, cinnamon and ginger notes that’ll warm your cockles enough so you can settle in to enjoy the raw bar.
Tequila? Sure. Mezcal? Been there, done that. Pulque? Que? Certainly a lesser known beverage than its fellow agave-based cousins, pulque is fermented rather than distilled. Try the classic version, or an infusion with various combinations of sweet, savory and tart ingredients often found in Mexico –limes, agave nectar, jicama, tomatillo, tamarind, and guava, among others — and either tequila or mezcal, for good measure.