If you’re a viewer of HBO’s “Hacks,” it’s possible you’ve seen the episode where Jean Smart’s character doles out some drinking advice to the young comedy writer (played by Hannah Einbinder) who is traveling with her on tour. While sitting at a dive bar, Smart tells Einbinder that she should never order a cocktail at bars on the road, or red wine for that matter. Only cold white wine will do because, when white wine is cold, you can’t tell it’s bad.
There is a bit of truth to the idea that you don’t go to a dive bar to have a proper Martini, and her white wine trick does work, but there are a few cocktails you could attempt to order if you are feeling a bit adventurous.
The first cocktail to go for is a Gin and Tonic. Just make sure the bar is using a gin you’ve heard of and that the tonic is coming out of a bottle, and not from a gun. Tonic that comes out of the same soda gun the bar uses to serve a whiskey and Coke is never good and can make any high-quality gin taste terrible when combined.
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If all else fails, order a Boilermaker, which is simply a shot of whiskey and a cold draft beer. You can never go wrong with that. Or, take Jean Smart’s advice, and stick to cold white wine.