Thirsty Writer, Libations Marketer
For many of us, the relationship with the bartender at our favorite restaurant is paramount. He or she often greets us by name, asks about our day, and pours us a welcome drink. A bartender is like good host – introducing fellow guests, sharing the latest gossip, and making sure everyone is having a great time. Perhaps this is why – for most of us – snagging a bar seat for dinner trumps a table any day of the week.
So who are the North Shore’s most dazzling bartenders? We flip sides and find out a bit more about four of our favorites; they make mean conversation and shake quite a cocktail.
Who: Brett Henderson, The Poynt in Newburyport
2 oz. Beet Infused* Bully Boy Vodka
½ oz. Fruit Lab Organic Ginger Liqueur
¼ oz. House Ginger Simple Syrup**
¾ Fresh Lemon Juice
Combine all ingredients in shaker filled with ice – Shake vigorously – strain into cocktail glass and garnish with a lemon twist
* Peel one beet (size of a baseball) and cut into cubes. Add beets to vodka and cover. Store in refrigerator for 3 days. Strain out beets and funnel beet vodka back into bottle. Keep refrigerated or the color will oxidize to a brown color.
** Boil 1 cup of water. Add 1 cup of sugar and stir until dissolved. Peel and dice 3 TBSP of fresh ginger and add to simple and let steep for three hours, then strain out the ginger
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Who: Ramona Shah, Bar Manager at Opus in Salem.
(Named after a pretty amazing but strange Greek film by Yorgos Lanthimos)
2 ½ oz. Old Overholt Rye
¾ oz. Meletti Amaro
¾ oz. Privateer Amber rum
3 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
Stir all ingredients in a mixing glass with ice and strain into a martini glass (with a Campari rinse in the glass before you strain).
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Who: Sean Patrick Maher, Bar Manager and Co-Owner of Barrel House American Bar in Beverly.
(A negroni inspired rum drink, ardent spirit was the name for illicit and/or homemade hooch during the 17th and 18th centuries in colonial America.)
1 oz. Old Ipswich Tavern Rum
1 oz. Cocchi Vermouth di Torino
1 oz. Cynar
Stir over cracked ice, strain into chilled lowball, garnish with an orange twist.
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Who: Melissa Filgerleski, Lead Bartender, The Bancroft in Burlington.
(My riff on the classic Negroni)
1 oz. Ransom Old Tom Gin
1 oz. St. George Raspberry Liqueur
1 oz. Campari
Combine all ingredients in mixing glass. Add ice and stir for 15 – 20 seconds. Pour over a large ice cube into a double old fashioned glass. Garnish with a thick orange twist, expressing all oils on the surface of the cocktail.
Originally published in the November 2015 issue of Northshore magazine. Click here for full PDF of article. Photographs by Paul Lyden and Anythony Tieuli.