Where Not to Order a Sazerac

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Your mechanic doesn’t want to take a look at your refrigerator. Your dentist doesn’t have any idea what’s up with your knee. The guy at the dive bar doesn’t want to make you a Sazerac.

According to the sandwich board there’s a special on Red-Headed Sluts. You probably shouldn’t ask if they use Absinthe or Herbsaint.

There are more framed jerseys on the walls then there are tap handles. Don’t ask them to muddle a sugar cube in place of simple syrup.

I’m sorry, but it’s plastic cups only at the beer garden. No they don’t have a preference of Peychaud’s or Angostura.

That’s fine. It’s a beautiful day and the beer is cold. Order a Yuengling and enjoy the game. Treat yourself to the best Red-Headed Slut you’ve ever had in your entire life. But you probably shouldn’t order a Sazerac.

The woman at the wine bar would rather talk about how long this particular Chianti rested on the lees than rinse a glass with Absinthe.

Your bartender at the brewery is more interested in the blend of wild yeast strains in your saison than whether you prefer three dashes of bitters or four.

These are professionals who worked hard to be good at what they do and they’d love to do it for you but if it’s not the thing that they do then the odds are good that they probably can’t do it.

Maybe not. Maybe they’re branching out. Maybe they’re expanding their repertoire. Maybe they worked in an old-school cocktail bar for decades, the kind with low lighting and a marble countertop and the same cadre of regulars alighting on the bar every night like crows on a telephone wire framed by old recipes for slings and fizzes mounted to the wall and they have been dying for someone to ask for a sazerac because it’s been years (years!) and they’re starving. Maybe your IT guy was a firefighter in college. Don’t go to him first if the building’s burning down.

All rail drinks are four dollars until six pm. Gin and Tonic please.

It’s dollar Corona night. I’ll take four.

It’s happy hour and the bar is crowded and there’s plastic speedpours everywhere and there’s a special on Micheladas and the entire bar is floating because it’s a boat. Don’t order a Sazerac.

Most bars if they’re good, and always assume they’re good, work very hard at being good. Because they work hard to be good at one thing doesn’t mean they’re good at everything.

Brewing beer is hard work. Presenting wine at a table is hard work. Controlling a bar full of twenty-one-year-olds on game day during homecoming when Jameson’s on special and the kitchen is out of everything except french fries is hard work. Making a Sazerac is hard work.

A bar’s thing is its thing and it doesn’t have to be your thing and if their thing and your thing are not the same thing then that’s okay because variety is the spice of life and if the world was full of nothing but classy cocktail bars we’d all be robbing our own mothers for a lite beer in no time.

Your flight attendant couldn’t help you with the train schedule. Your cheese guy at the farmer’s market was all out of Asparagus. Your bartender at the dive bar made your Sazerac with Jack Daniels.

– G

Inspired by an amusing social-media kerfuffle between co-founders earlier this week. If you’d like to hear more about places where you should order a Sazerac listen to our pilot episode, coming June 1st.

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