2011: A Drinker’s Preview

Knob Creek 9 Year Single Barrel Bourbon Bottle - New Spirits for 2011

While the excitement of the holidays may be over, there’s a lot to look forward to in the next 12 months. We’re talking about tasty new small-batch bourbons, must-read books, top bar openings and cocktail trends. Find out today what you’ll be drinking in 2011.

Whiskies Worth the Wait

There are two spirits coming out this year that bourbon fans have to try. Knob Creek is releasing a very tasty 120-proof Single Barrel Reserve ($40), which will be on store shelves in early February. And Lincoln Henderson, the former master distiller of Woodford Reserve, is introducing the first bottling of his new brand Angel’s Envy ($45) later this month. The rich and complex whiskey was aged in traditional new oak barrels and finished in port casks.

Go Dutch

This winter, New York chef Andrew Carmellini’s long-awaited new spot is finally set to open. Though his famed Italian restaurant, Locanda Verde, is still packed every night, The Dutch will focus on regional American food and feature a bar run by talented mixologist Naren Young. It will offer both a cocktail list and a selection of craft spirits made in the US.

Please Don’t Tell

Since opening in 2007, PDT in New York’s East Village has quickly established itself as one of the best bars in the world. Next fall, you’ll be able to buy The PDT Cocktail Book, which will feature more than 300 recipes and a detailed spirits primer. The tome was written by Jim Meehan, the establishment’s managing partner and a Liquor.com advisor.

Michelin-Starred Cocktails

Manresa, just outside of San Jose, Calif., currently serves only wine and beer. But in April, the two-Michelin-star restaurant is adding a bar and cocktail lounge. Original creations from beverage director Jeff Bareilles will feature unique spirits discovered on his European travels as well as fresh, biodynamic ingredients.

The Power of Punch

Many bartenders and drinkers have recently discovered the joys of big bowls of old-timey concoctions. Thanks to Liquor.com advisor and mixological historian David Wondrich’s recently published book, Punch: The Delights (and Dangers) of the Flowing Bowl, even more bars will be serving these communal drinks in the coming months.

Lone-Star Slinger

Bill Norris gained renown as the bar manager of Fino in Austin, Tex., but his new place in town takes cocktails to a whole other level. Haddington’s, which opened this week, offers a long list of original creations, including a Gin & Tonic featuring house-made tonic.

Time for Tiki

It’s hard to imagine that tiki bars almost disappeared. Thankfully, there’s now a new generation of tropical-themed joints across the country. We’re looking forward to enjoying pineapple-and-coconut concoctions in 2011.

Read the Classics

Later this month, cocktail fans will be able to buy a faithful and beautiful reproduction of William Schmidt’s 1892 The Flowing Bowl from Mud Puddle Books, which includes a fascinating introduction by Wondrich. And this summer, the company is publishing an edition of Charles Mahoney’s rare 1916 The Hoffman House Bartender’s Guide, with an introduction by Meehan.

Yankee Agave

More than 100 different tequilas and mezcals will be available at Teqa, set to open in New York’s Murray Hill neighborhood next month. Naren Young will also manage this bar, mixing up a range of cocktails featuring the signature spirits. Yankees captain Derek Jeter’s personal chef, Lisa Schoen, created the menu of Mexican classics.

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Comments

  1. Thirsty in LA says

    Another whiskey to look forward to is this month’s release of the Evan Williams Single Barrel Vintage 2001 Bourbon.

    In Chicago, Grant Achatz (3-Michelin-star Alinea) is opening Aviary, a “bartender-less” cocktail lounge adjacent to his upcoming Next restaurant.

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