Playboy's Best Bars 2013

By The Editors of Playboy Photography by Gorman Studio

Share

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail As if Red Rooster Harlem weren’t swinging enough, owner-chef Marcus Samuelsson (pictured) has upped the ante with the downstairs Ginny’s Supper Club. It’s modern, yet it identifies, as beverage director Lonn Coupel-Coward puts it, “with a time when men wore suits and bow ties just to walk to the corner store, and the ladies loved it.” The drinks are dandy too: Scotch whiskey, fresh basil, ginger, Chivas and ginger beer make a modern take on the Moscow mule.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail Owners Molly Wizenberg and husband Brandon Pettit are self-made culinarians. (Wizenberg writes the food blog Orangette and with Pettit opened Delancey restaurant.) Their new bar emphasizes handmade liqueurs, tinctures, bitters and digestifs. Cheers to DIY.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail Two bartenders from pioneering speakeasy Milk & Honey, Sam Ross and Michael McIlroy, have taken over, changed its name to Attaboy and loosened the joint’s proverbial tie (no more house rules, no more reservations). Drinks are crafted with surgical precision and served without stuffiness. Order a Tommy’s No. 2 (which uses both tequila and mezcal) or a well-balanced, whiskey-based ­Penicillin.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail A bar at a youth hostel in Miami: Must be sketchy, right? Not when the hostel is haute and its bar was created by the cocktail consultancy Bar Lab. The drinks have playful names (Bath Salt Zombie, Nobody F*#ks With Jesus) and are concocted using herbs from the on-site garden. The interior brims with old-timey touches, but the clientele prefers to swig by the swimming pool or over a game of Ping-Pong.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail Esoteric liquors, rare beers and niche wines provide the punch at this experimental bar on a funky Uptown block. Owner Neal Bodenheimer loves to push the limits while ­delivering delicious drinks. He’s currently into ­Stoupakis ­Homericon ­Mastiha, a Greek liqueur made from mastic resin. It appears in a cocktail called Magic Tree, which has become a house favorite.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail Run by restaurant-and-bar charity OKRA (Organized Kollaboration on Restaurant Affairs), this joint gives all its proceeds to an evolving list of local organizations and social causes. Each drink buys a vote that can be cast in favor of one of four nominated charities. Drinking has never felt so virtuous.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail This offshoot of the perennially thronged Argentine-inspired restaurant Ox was conceived as a spot for patrons to have a drink while waiting for their tables. The space has since become a destination in its own right, with a rustic-chic decor and carefully crafted cocktails such as La Yapa, made with rye, lemon juice and Fernet Branca.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail It’s reservations only at this bar below the two-Michelin-starred Atera. The chef, forager Matthew Lightner, offers willfully unusual locavore dishes and a drinks menu to match. You may not recognize a martini of gin, beet, white cardamom and a hardy shrub called rue. But you will have a mind-blowing woodsy adventure from the comfort of your leather chair.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail The only piece of equipment Booker and Dax seems to be missing is a flux capacitor. Liquid nitrogen chills glasses. A rotary evaporator distills ingredients into essential oils. Bartenders plunge a 1,500-degree red-hot poker into cocktails to caramelize sugars just before serving. There’s a science to taking old standbys back to the future. Take the hood-famous gin and juice: Grapefruit juice is spun through a centrifuge for clarification, mixed with gin and carbonated to perfection.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail If ever there were a time and place to do a foam-topped, sphericalized, gently misted interpretive cocktail dance, it is not nor will it ever be during operating hours at Neat. At this streamlined midcentury throwback bar there are no menus, just skilled bartenders who know the 250 bottles of top-shelf booze on the wall well. A sidecar of fresh ginger and lemon will balance out a deep rye. A dash of rosemary syrup brings out the botanicals in a gin on ice. With all spirits served (take a wild guess) neat or paired with fresh juice or house-made syrups, it’s easy to see what the fuss is about.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail We tend to keep our drinking and thinking separate. But the 21-page menu at this Corktown bar is a masterpiece, with 100-plus cocktails, punches, spirits, beers and wines. This beast is supplemented seasonally with an additional 20 or so original drinks, such as the Knackery, a bourbon-­Benedictine-peach number, and the gingery, cinnamony Forager’s old ­fashioned.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail Before countless pseudo-speakeasies opened across the country, there was PDT (which stands for “please don’t tell”). Step inside the phone booth at Crif Dogs on St. Marks Place, pick up the receiver and ask to be let in. If there’s an open seat in this civilized subterranean speakeasy-style bar, prepare to be blown away by the highest level of vintage and modern craft cocktails.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail Civilized patrons, contemplative barkeeps and intimate tables and booths make this bar hidden behind a door at Cole’s restaurant an L.A. gem. Order a summery Bramble cocktail, or make one at home (see below). Muddle five fresh blackberries in a lowball glass. Add one and a half ounces gin, three quarters of an ounce fresh lemon juice and half an ounce simple syrup. Stir. Fill glass with crushed ice. Pour three quarters of an ounce blackberry liqueur over ice. Garnish with a blackberry.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail The bar in Clyde Common restaurant, at the ­über-cool Ace ­Hotel, is refreshingly un-­Portland (little flannel, no taxidermy). This is the home of the barrel-aged cocktail (a drink mellowed in an oak cask). It is also where bartender Jeffrey Morgenthaler does the whole local artisanal thing without making it seem precious. The cocktail menu is smart and satisfying. So is ­Morgenthaler’s ­response to requests such as “Give me something tart made with gin.” Trust him.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail L.A.’s original craft-beer mecca is still the place to beat. We prefer the newer, Culver City location (pictured) for its spacious ­patio and long, sleek bar tricked out with an array of taps loaded with some of the best microbrews in the United States. The house burger is perfect beer food and justly regarded as one of the finest in town.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail Named after temperance preacher William Ashley “Billy” Sunday, this Logan Square bar is like a church devoted to the heavenly realities of post-Prohibition America: Rare ingredients including wormwood and ambergris make their way into exquisitely balanced cocktails. And the kitchen turns out bar food of the highest order: pickled sardines, steak tartare and rabbit pot pie.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail Situated in a former bank in the Wheeler Opera House, this bar has a charming historic feel. Drinks are often served from vintage barware collected by “lead libation liaison” Joshua-Peter Smith, who excels at inventing custom cocktails for guests. The 26-page menu has a section for “group decision” punch bowls and offers more than 70 whiskeys.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail Drinking on an empty stomach is never advisable. Which is why we welcome the arrival of the upstairs-­downstairs restaurant-bar duo Borough and Parlour. The strategy is this: Dine ­early at Borough, ordering one drink from the cocktail cart while eating such hearty fare as lamb loin with chickpeas and fava beans. Finish the night at Parlour with a cocktail—try an old fashioned made with both Jim Beam rye and Old Grand-Dad 114.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail In a vintage warehouse in the Mission District, bartenders mix a virtual rainbow of concoctions inspired by the Pantone color wheel. You order off a fanned stack of cards designed to look like paint samples. The sage-colored Baby Turtle (Tequila Ocho reposado, Campari, grapefruit, lime, egg white, cinnamon) is a favorite, but be prepared to drink standing up—Trick Dog is always packed.

In this era of hand-carved ice, house-made bitters and $50 shots of microbatch bourbon, it’s hard to get anything approaching a bad drink. We’re thrilled about that, but the downside of the cocktail revolution is too many cookie-cutter pseudo-speakeasies lorded over by know-it-all mixologists who’ve replaced simple drinking with too much thinking. To cut through the pretense, we perched on stools across the ­country--at old standbys and groundbreaking ­newcomers--to bring you the best bars for your buck. Best Place to Relive the Harlem Renaissance Best Bar From a Blogger Best Thing Since Milk & Honey Best Excuse to Share a Quad Room Best Bar for Oddball ­Ingredients Best Reason to Give Best Waiting Room Best Place to Get Philosophical Best Science Project Best Place to Give It Your Best Shot Best Reason to Read Best Reason to Use a Phone Booth Best of the West Best Reason to Book a Room in Portland Best Place to Get Crafty Best Prohibition Joke Best High-­Altitude Bar Best One-Two Punch Best Color Code The "it" Cocktail You can thank Mad Men and the bourbon boom for the resurgence of the old fashioned, which is showing up in many guises on cocktail menus across the country. Here’s how to make a new and improved version at home. 2 Luxardo mar­aschino cherries 2-inch strip orange peel ½ tsp. sugar 2 dashes ­orange bitters 2 oz. bourbon Muddle the cherries, orange peel, sugar and bitters in a lowball glass. Fill glass with ice, add bourbon and stir. If it’s too strong for your taste, tame it with a splash of soda water.


Share

Playboy Social