In anticipation of our big reveal of the People’s Best New Bar, we’ve been chatting with some of the mixologists who inspire us most. When asked about what they drink off duty, the answer is often the same: a beer and a shot. Bars around the country are catching on, making it even easier to pick out your end-of-the-night combo with curated menu sections devoted to boilermakers (beer-and-shot combinations). Here, a few of our favorites.
1. Cutt the Schlitz! at the Kirkland Tap and Trotter, Somerville, MA: A shot of Cutty Sark whisky and a Schlitz beer. We are suckers for good (and bad) puns.
2. Beer Eye on the Straight Rye at Boilermaker, NYC: A shot of Sazerac rye whiskey and a Two Brothers Cain and Ebel Red Rye ale. More excellent pun execution. And the whole bar is named after the mighty beer-and-shot combination! Bonus: Groups of three or more can order the Bucket of Boilermakers (six shots of Buffalo Trace whiskey and a six-pack of Miller High Life).
3. The Stranger at Republic in Washington, DC: A shot of Pernod and “something dark,” like the Flying Dog Kujo Imperial Coffee Stout. Chef Danny Wells and bar manager Brett Robison tell the story of the Bingers (beer and shot) section of their late-night menu: “Before we opened, we would constantly joke around to keep morale high in the frenzy of preopening. (It’s really hard to keep your spirits up while you’re getting your butt kicked every day by one thing or another.) So whenever something went right, or somebody had a good idea, or somebody made an awesome joke, we would say to each other ‘Bing!’—it was almost like saying, ‘We got this.’ Now ‘Bingers’ are a part of our late-night menu, in homage to the chefs, bartenders and bands that come in after their shifts are over.”
4. The Burger, Beer and Bourbon Special at the Fat Ham, Philadelphia: Every Friday and Saturday night, chef Kevin Sbraga offers a limited number of pimento cheeseburgers, served with a shot of Four Roses Yellow Label bourbon and a can of Neshaminy Creek Brewing Co. beer, for $18.
5. The Late Night Special at Bait Shop, Seattle: A shot of Jameson or Fernet with a Rainier Tallboy beer. From 11 p.m. to 2 a.m., this combination costs only $7. Even nonindustry folks can feel like a part of the bartending community with a shot of Fernet in hand.