5 Drink Trends To Know: 2-Ingredient Cocktails, Exotic New Liqueurs, Unexpected Mixers, and More

As the question of what to order becomes ever more Challenging, some cutting-edgc answers: From minimalist two-ingredient drinks to complex Milk-based punches—here's everything you need to know to imbibe right right now.

Photos courtesy of Jeremy Liebman.

As the question of what to order becomes ever more challenging, some cutting-edge answers: From minimalist two-ingredient drinks to complex milk-based punches—here's everything you need to know to imbibe right right now.


Photos courtesy of Jeremy Liebman.

Cruzan Black Strap Rum and Pineapple Juice (pictured above)

Attaboy, New York City

Freshly squeezed pineapple juice sinks below this drink's molasses-flavored rum to form a beverage that has a well-balanced taste—and look.

Spruce Beer and Absinthe

Trick Dog, San Francisco

The pinelike flavor of Empire Bottling Works Spruce Beer meshes well with the light-bodied, herbal absinthe made by Kbler, a Swiss distiller.

Sure-Footed Mule

RPM Italian, Chicago

Created by cocktail guru Paul McGee, this combination of Luxardo Amaro Abano and Blenheim Ginger Ale drinks like a delicious Italian soda.

Venetian Sparkler

Acorn, Denver

At this forthcoming sister spot to local hangout Oak on Fourteenth, pressed and strained rhubarb juice plays nicely with an effervescent Spanish cava.

The Southern Drawl

Nopa Kitchen + Bar, Washington, D.C.

A pistachio-oil-infused Heitz Ink Grade port is added to Elijah Craig bourbon for a liquid celebration of the American South.

The Cuban Missile Crisis

Hop Sing Laundromat, Philadelphia

This high-proof libation mixes three parts Jameson Gold Reserve and one part 21-year-old El Dorado rum for a surprisingly sippable drink.


Photos courtesy of Jeremy Liebman.

Half-ounce spray vials of Vermont's Urban Moon-Shine bitters come in three flavors and are ideal for misting the inside of a cocktail glass for a perfect Manhattan anywhere.

A Paloma or a michelada at a cabin in the woods? Pack a Jacobsen Salt Co. slide tin, which holds half an ounce of bright white flakes hand-harvested off the Oregon coast.

The Brooklyn-made W&P Cocktail Kit includes a wooden muddler, a stain-less-steel jigger, striped linen cocktail napkins, four Picardie tumblers, and a mason-jar shaker–all packed in a handsome leather-handled canvas tote that fits easily in tight spots.

Travel-size bottles of booze don't have to be swill: Cover all your bases with a single-malt 12-Year Macallan (great for sipping before slipping off to sleep), a trusty Hendrick's gin, Knob Creek bourbon, the boutique Brazilian rum Orinoco, and a wild-card liqueur, Branca Menta.


Photos courtesy of Jeremy Liebman.

Its name may sound like a witches' incantation, but the 17th-century cocktail enhancer oleo saccharum is the backbone of a new breed of classic punches. Glossy syrups made in-house with citrus peels and sugar, oleos show up in the Herb of Grace punch at former Clyde Common bartender Andrew Volk's Portland, Maine, spot Hunt + Alpine Club, the bourbon old-fashioned at Pinewood Tippling Room in Decatur, Georgia, and a bowl of champagne, rum, and Cognac at Emmanuelle in Philadelphia.


Photos courtesy of Jeremy Liebman.

From the don't-knock-it-till-you-try-it category: Curdled milk is making its way into some of the most inventive cocktails in the country. By heating dairy with a mix of citrus and spirits, then filtering it, the bartenders at these hot spots produce clear punches with velvety finishes.



It looks like a water with lime, but the Lechita at Williamsburg's austere Scandinavian restaurant is made from clarified milk. Beverage director Shiraz Noor adds green Chartreuse, oleo saccharum (see "The Secret Sweetener," above), and mezcal for a smooth, lemon-flavored take on the margarita.


Photos courtesy of Jeremy Liebman.

The Lechita at Aska, Brooklyn.

The Black Hound

New York City

The Cowboy's Bandaid at this Battery Park City saloon is a quick pour, because beverage director Jeremy Strawn does the work in advance: He steeps honey, lemon, ginger, rhubarb, two types of bitters, and an apple pie's worth of spices in scotch for 24 hours, then clarifies it with milk and bottles big batches.

The Spence


Whispers of sweet spices like vanilla, cinnamon, and star anise, along with a pile of dime-size white-chocolate crisps, make the Milk Punch & Cookies at Richard Blais' newest midtown eatery sound like a stomach-filling dessert. But this silky, translucent milk-based elixir is backed with brandy and lemon and goes down smooth anytime.

Trick Dog

San Francisco

Big, sharable drinks are a key part of the cocktail program at this bilevel industrial-style bar in the Mission. The supersize Irish Coffee Milk Punch adds cream sherry, lemon, and orange—as well as clarified and triple-strained heavy cream and milk—to the traditional whiskey-and-coffee combo and serves it in swing-top half-liter flasks.

Vernick Food & Drink


For his Milk Punch, cocktail prodigy Vincent Stipo pours heated vanilla milk over tea-and-citrus-infused gin, then strains it through cheese-cloth into a sherry glass "seasoned" with cinnamon smoke. The result is a creamy, canary-colored drink popular with the Rittenhouse crowd at this L-shaped concrete bar.


Photos courtesy of Jeremy Liebman.


Origin: Czech Republic

Taste: Winter holidays in a bottle—cinnamon, clove, ginger

Where to get it: Villains Tavern, Los Angeles

Try it in a: Moscow Mule


Origin: Sweden

Taste: Smoky, rich, and subtly sweet

Where to get it: Dram, Brooklyn

Try it in a: Corpse Reviver


Origin: Austria

Taste: A brooding, herbaceous version of Fernet Branca

Where to get it: Von Trapp's, Seattle

Try it in a: Rusty Nail


Origin: Hungary

Taste: Sweetly spicy with bitter grapefruit notes

Where to get it: Kask, Portland, Oregon

Try it in a: Negroni

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