May 13 we salute drinkable culinary triumphs for World Cocktail Day. Creative and hardworking bartenders throughout the Boston area will shake and stir the best libations around.
Best Boston Cocktail Bars
Make a reservation at one of these incredible bars and take part in the celebrations.
Drink has dedicated itself to the craft cocktail. Using classic recipes from the prohibition era as well as modern innovations and artisanal ingredients, the cocktail menu is one of the best in the city. Bring in the spring weather and order a "Maximilian Affair" with tequila, lemon, elderflower liqueur, and sweet vermouth. The talented team doesn't rely on a menu for all of their cocktail creations. Tell the bartenders your likes and dislikes and they'll create something especially for you. Enrich your cocktail experience and order the gruyere gougeres or the potted foie gras with seasonal marmalade and sourdough toast.
The Baldwin Bar
Inside the Baldwin Mansion is a small cocktail bar that is delivering big flavor. The Baldwin Bar menu features an impressive list of house tiki creations that will transport you straight to the islands. The influence from O.G. tiki mixologists Trader Vic and Don the Beachcomber is obvious and two mai tai variations are named after these titans of the cocktail world. Each cocktail comes with a brief flavor profile which is helpful since many of the ingredients exotic. Try the spirit-forward and nutty "Threepenny Opera" with rye, Ramozzoti, PX sherry, and pandan. If you need your drink to be Instagram-worthy, order the "Halo Halo," a bright purple concoction with white rum, cachaca, ube milk, pineapple, and lime.
Brick & Mortar
The mixologists at Brick & Mortar know their stuff. That's probably why this Cambridge cocktail den has been on Esquire's list of best bars in America and Zagat's "16 Must Try Cocktail Destinations Around The World." Try the vegetal and refreshing "Disco Map" with mezcal, cucumber, yellow chartreuse, and lime. If you're a fan of darker flavors go for the "Paradise Garage" with blended scotch, apricot, and cynar (an artichoke amaro). After a few rounds, soak up the alcohol with skewers of Calabrese salami, pepperoncini, and pimento-stuffed olives. It's a salty, briny snack that pairs well with alcohol.
Whether you want to order cocktail kits for home or sit in an actual bar again (can you imagine?) Blossom Bar has you covered. This Brookline spot has a long, curved white marble bar and chic esthetic that matches the stunning glassware and innovative cocktails. The tropical and deeply flavorful "Pulque" cocktail uses tequila, Licor 43, soursop verde, pineapple, and Topo Chico for fizz factor. Definitely order a "Gloria" because it was the winner of the 2019 Bacardi Legacy East Competition. It combines Bacardi four-year, passion fruit, lime, cinnamon, coffee, and creamy mascarpone.
Variety Bar serves quality cocktails without the pretentious fuss that can be associated with craft cocktail bars. Located on the second floor of Bow Market, Variety is a neighborhood, no-judgement zone with quality bites to boot. Take it back to childhood memories and order the "PB & J Flip" with whiskey, peanut butter syrup, Concord grape wine, amaro, a whole egg (yes, it's safe), and nutmeg. The house milk punch is a revelation with olive oil-infused gin, salted honey, lemon, whey, and just a hint of cinnamon. The food menu is full of alcohol-friendly snacks like pickles, popcorn, and cheese and crackers.
Create Gallery and Cocktail Lounge
Part art gallery and part draft cocktail lounge, Create Gallery and Cocktail Lounge is a hip spot to sip and take in some art. The artists are creators that few know (but definitely should) and DJs spin records to add a soundtrack to your night of drinking. As winter slowly fades, order the "Miso Hot Buttered Rum" with nutmeg and cinnamon. If you're desperately looking towards spring, try the "Selfoss" with vodka, dill, lemongrass, lemon, and bright rhubarb bitters. Food comes from Humaari Provisions (Middle Eastern cuisine) and desserts from La Bottega (gourmet Italian sweets.)