The cocktail and wine bar landscape in New York City is enchanting and, true to form, VinePair staffers have navigated our way through many of them in search of good — no, great — drinks.
Embracing everything from American wines to sour IPA’s, this past month brought an exciting mix of drinks and discovery. Gathered here are the best things we uncovered, enjoyed, and drank this month.
“Last week, I went to Oiji Mi, a new-ish Korean fine dining experience in Flatiron, and had one of the most beautiful cocktails I’ve ever seen. It was called the Witch Doctor and it tasted amazing. It’s made with blanco tequila, absinthe, sesame, and honey, and is topped with a gorgeous slice of Korean pear dusted with matcha powder. While somewhat booze-heavy, it was still so light and refreshing and went perfectly with all the food.” —Danielle Grinberg, art director
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“Hands down the best thing I drank last month was a Grace Estates 2021 Cabernet Franc.” —Keith Beavers, tasting director
“I can honestly say the best thing I drank this month was a Shock Top at the Harry Styles concert earlier this week. The beer was probably fine, as far as beers go, but I guess it tasted extra good because I was just so excited and happy to be there. Plus, I think it was, like, $18, so I made sure to thoroughly enjoy it.” —Olivia White, editorial intern
“The best thing I drank this month would have to be Indigené Cellars’ Petite Sirah. I got a chance to taste it at the Hue Society’s Wine & Culture Fest in Atlanta, and I’ve been dreaming about it ever since.” —Katie Brown, editor
“I’ve been totally obsessed with The Bronx Brewery’s City Island Sour. The can’s colorful packaging first caught my eye, but I was truly impressed with the sour IPA’s taste. I usually don’t reach for a beer, but this sour’s flavor was so delightfully tart that it resembled a super-citrusy cocktail. The can design is also created by an NYC graffiti artist, which I love.” —Nicolette Baker, news writer
“Brix & Rye in Greenport, NY is one of my favorite bars in the country. No one makes you feel more welcome to be somewhere than co-owner Evan Bucholz. The way he and his team make drinks is precisely the way I like to drink ’em: simple yet complex. I’m in love with their entire (very classic) menu, but I always find myself ordering the Barbados Buck with Mount Gay Eclipse Rum, housemade ginger concoction, lime, and topped with Angostura, bubbly water. It’s just so crispy and such a good cocktail.” — Emily Arseneau, director, brand sales and partnerships
“I grabbed a can of Talea’s Peach Cobbler Tart Deco on a whim and it was such a delicious surprise. It’s a sweet, peachy sour IPA that’s rich but still refreshing and tart without being too sour. Definitely a standout among the things I drank this month.” —Joanna Sciarrino, editor in chief
“I’m embracing some late-summer hedonism, and the Strawbanero Mead from Honeygirl Meadery has been by my side to help me do just that. The combination of honey, strawberry, and habanero pepper is bright, fun, and more interesting than your typical spicy beverage. It’s great by itself or incorporated into a Margarita. The Durham, N.C.-based meadery also sources all its honey, fruit, flowers, and herbs from local producers. Plus, the owner, Diane, is incredibly knowledgeable and kind. Pretty sweet, right?” —Sylvie Baggett, branded content editor
“The best thing I drank last month was a cocktail called the Pituco at Tabaré in Williamsburg. It’s made with fresh strawberries, which provide a nice muddled base for the housemade orange gin Martini, and is finished with rosemary syrup and fresh sprig. It was refreshing without being too sweet, which was exactly what I was looking for on a hot August day.” —Jessica Fields, assistant editor
“This month, Joey Smith (bar director at New York’s Chez Zou) introduced me to the idea of kicking off the night with a miniature Piña Colada and now I’m obsessed. They make a wonderful version of the cocktail at Chez Zou and I can also recommend the offering at Long Island Bar in Brooklyn. Having had a few at different places now, it’s no wonder that the Piña Colada has been one of the most popular cocktails this summer.” —Tim McKirdy, managing editor