The Cocktail Crystal Ball
A cheat sheet of bar trends to come.
By Kara Newman
Couldn't make it to the New York Bar Show? Don't despair; we have a cheat sheet of bar trends to come. Here's what's to expect:
We'll drink pink. Pink grapefruit & other citruses will replace pomegranate as the new "hot" flavor for cocktails. Asian flavors also will figure prominently: look for yuzu (a Japanese citron similar to lemon), ginger, lychee, lemongrass and plum featured in liqueurs, simple syrups and mixers.
We'll party all night long. Riding on the coattails of Red Bull-and-vodka, energy drink companies now are pouring all their…well, energy into marketing their products as mixers of the moment. And if that's not enough, look for buzzed-up alcohol, such as p.i.n.k's caffeine- and guarana-infused vodka.
We'll be mixing it up old-school… Expect more "historic" cocktails, like Sidecars and Manhattans, to reappear on menus, as well as updated riffs on the classics, thanks to a seminar by cocktail historian Dave Wondrich, a k a the "living ipod of drink lore." Overheard at one booth: retro-minded bar owners discussing where to find sturdy repros of old stemware.
…If we're mixing it up at all. Ironically, just as "mixologists" are commanding the bar with elaborate concoctions, there's no shortage of labor savers for the shortcut-inclined. Daily's trotted out pre-mixed boxes of Cosmos and freezer pouches of Daquiris, while "The Margarita King" poured out ready-mixed bottles of surprisingly fresh-tasting, lime-accented margaritas. Attention lazybones: If shaking and pouring a drink is too much effort, Metropolitan Martini's syrupy-sweet day-glo cocktails are portioned into sealed plastic martini glasses.
We'll be very premium people. Apologies to Jonathan Safran Foer, but companies were eager to proffer "premium" spirits, from vodka distilled four times (.RU), five times (Idol, Silk), or a whopping six times (Tito's, XOXO), to rich, ultra-aged "sipping" tequilas.
We'll buy a round for our buds in Birkenstocks. Curious crowds gathered to inspect organic spirits, a relatively new category, on offer from New Hampshire's Maison Jomere, including vodka, "Juniper Green" gin and spiced rum. Can granola-rimmed martini glasses be far behind?
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