The newest place from the owners of Bourbon & Branch honors the Kentucky warehouses where bourbon is aged. The 300 bourbon barrels that decorate the ceiling signal the bar's emphasis on whiskey drinks. Another specialty at Rickhouse: punches, like a gingery Pimm's with gin and lemon, served in white milk-glass bowls with giant blocks of berry-studded ice.
When the century-old Connaught hotel underwent a $120 million restoration in 2008, the famed Art Deco Connaught Bar was updated, too. Among the new features is a martini trolley overseen by white-gloved attendants, who mix premium gins and vodkas with Italian Gancia vermouth. Top London mixologists Ago Perrone and Erik Lorincz preside over the extensive cocktail list; Michelin-starred chef Hélène Darroze oversees snacks like lobster spring rolls.
In 2006, Romee De Goriainoff abandoned a career in finance to open the Right Bank's Experimental Cocktail Club. Curio is on the Left Bank; it has the same terrific cocktails in a more elegant setting, with chandeliers and taxidermy. His Strawberry Fields combines vodka and Champagne with a garnish of "slapped" mint, while the Copa Verde is a more unorthodox mix of tequila, honey and avocado.
Mayahuelnamed for the goddess of agave, the source of both mezcal and tequilafocuses on both spirits. Owner Phil Ward mixes exquisite drinks like the Slight Detour, combining jalapeño-infused tequila, reposado (aged) tequila, mezcal and agave nectar. The food is Mexican as well, like cochinita, braised pork belly with papaya-mango mustard.
"Japan is the Galápagos Islands of bartending: Mixologists develop their own ways of making classics," says High Five owner Hidetsugu Ueno. Ueno, who trained at Tokyo's legendary Star Bar Ginza, is obsessed with ice: At Bar High Five, he uses cubes of different temperatures in his drinks and can carve them to a diamond-like sparkle.
Chef-owner Pedro Miguel Schiaffino opened Malabar with his parents, which may explain the cozy living-room vibe. A Culinary Institute of America alum, he updates South American cocktails and serves dishes like barbecued goat with purple corn. Pisco is the house spirit; Malabar uses marinated pineapple for its sensational version of Pisco Punch.
Neil Perry's Rockpool Bar & Grill is set in a stunning green-marble building that evokes the Art Deco period. Mixologist Linden Pride celebrates a later erathe 1950swith his version of the Moscow Mule, mixing vodka with fresh ginger and house-made ginger beer. The extensive bar menu includes Perry's bacon-Gruyère wagyu cheeseburger.
Philip Duff's 40-seat Door 74 is in a hard-to-find location, in the workshop of a former garage. Duff uses old-school techniques, glasses and garnishes for seasonal drinks like the Fig & Foam, a bourbon sour with fresh grenadine and organic fig puree. His Vanilla-Berry Crush is his most famous creation; it's also served at the Juggle Juice Bar at Amsterdam Schipol Airport.
This bar is run by the owners of the experimental Scandinavian restaurant frantzén/lindeberg, across the street (diners can come by for a drink before or after dinner there; otherwise f/l Cocktailbar is members-only). By day, it's a bakery; at night, mixologists squeeze fruit juices to order and serve drinks like the Martinez Fashionedgin, maraschino liqueur and grape zest.
Named for the Irish writer who lived in Germany, Becketts Kopf is marked outside by an illuminated picture of Samuel Beckett's head (kopf means "head"). Husband-wife owners Oliver Ebert and Cristina Neves serve cocktails in vintage glasses, focusing on carefully modernized drinks like the Lusitanian (aged Portuguese brandy and sweet vermouth); the simple menu includes variously aged Ibérico hams.