We all like to go to the bar once in a while and indulge in some drinks but there is something to be said for the experience of drinking with class. It raises the level of the experience to new heights. To achieve this, there are a few steps to follow.
The first step is to find a good bar, someplace that takes the drink seriously with a sophisticated feel, but the most important point of the night is what you order. It may be fun to have a sugar soaked “martini” with your friends but that’s not the drink we’re targeting tonight. Here are some tasty drinks that will get a nod of approval and a bit of respect from your bartender.
If you like things spicy and herbal this is for you. It will most commonly be made with dry London gin and ginger ale. But if you have the option I would opt for a nice medium bodied gin and old style ginger beer. This is a simple cocktail that has surprising complexity and drinkability. You aren’t going to find real ginger beer at a rave club dripping in LED lights.
Another fairly simple cocktail with a lot of history, the whiskey sour is a pretty varied from bar to bar. Some places will just throw together sour mix, some sugar and cheap whiskey. I suggest staying away from bars like that. What’s the point of being the classiest person in a dive? A real whiskey sour should be made with lemon juice, whiskey and a small amount of sugar. This is shaken and served over ice. You can usually request it sweet or dry depending on your tastes. The woody character of the whiskey and the lemon play well together. There is a variation known as the Boston sour that uses a bit of egg white to give a frothy head to the drink. Although egg was common in a lot of cocktails at one point some people will be blown off their bar stools if you suggest it today.
This isn’t what man people think of when they see “daiquiri” on a drink list. Along with the margarita, the daiquiri has been made into a joke drink filled with as many artificial flavors as exist on the planet. From apple jacks to pumpkin pie, none of them can hold a candle to their patriarch. I’ve even seen these served in glasses that use LED light bulbs to flash pretty colors in your face as you drink. Like the drink needed to be shamed more. A real daiquiri is a healthy dose of lime juice, some simple syrup and dark rum. Forget about light rum that will add little to nothing to a drink. The dark rum will blend with the lime and show you why this was the drink of naval officers dreaming of island paradise.
These are just a couple drinks that every bartender should be able to make but not every bartender can make well. Not only will you have an air of sophistication and class but you can use these to judge the skills of a bartender. Just remember the number one rule of remaining classy in a bar. Don’t get drunk. At least don’t appear to be.