Category Archives: Cocktails

Quarantine cocktails to get through your week

After 3+ weeks of  practicing some form of social distancing and self-quarantining, many of us have turned to video chat to try and stay connected with friends and family. Last week I joined my first virtual cocktail meet up and it was more fun than I would’ve expected.

My liquor cabinet doesn’t include most of the ingredients necessary for the six suggested cocktails but fortunately, the handsome bartender makes my favorite, a  gin & tonic. My preferred gin for a G&T is Bar Hill Gin. I like it so much I wrote about it here in 2015, Classic take on Gin & Tonic with Barr Hill Gin. What is your drink of choice these days?

Ina Garten says it’s cocktail hour – Cheers!

For all of you at home with nothing to do or in dire need of a distraction, enjoy this Tweet from @barstoolsports of Ina Garten showing us how to make the perfect Cosmpolitan. This video may well be the best thing you see all day.

Much thanks to my brother Tim for sharing.

New taqueria to open in South End

Boston Magazine recently featured an article about a new Mexican restaurant that will open inside the Revolution Hotel. Cosmica Mexican Eatery & Bar will focus on “inventive Mexican street food” and include items like chorizo-queso jalapeno poppers and duck carnitas tacos with mole verde – sounds delicious.

The new restaurant will be managed by the successful Wildlife Hospitality team, who also run The Beehive in the South End and Harvard Square’s Beat Brew Hall. Although the article didn’t mention a live entertainment license, I would bet you can expect Cosmica to offer live music. The hotel pays tribute to Boston’s rich music history and it would be only fitting that this new venue help the city’s current generation of musicians thrive.

Cosmica currently says they expect to open in November, but after taking a quick walk by the property this past weekend, it looks like a lot of work still needs to be done so we will see. Stay tuned.

Kiko from Boston Chops featured by The Boston Globe

gay boston,

Photo credit: The Boston Globe

Anyone who knows Sergio or me, know that we regularly frequent Boston Chops South End on Washington Street.  A big reason is because of the staff who are a tight-knit group of fun professionals who make their bar is one of the best places to meet up with friends for a drink in the neighborhood.

One of my favorite bartenders in Boston is Kiko. His flamboyance, wit and charm is a draw.  While Boston Chops is not a gay bar – it is a place where the 30-something and 40-something gay men of Boston can often be found meeting for cocktails or grabbing a dinner, which only adds to the appeal when Kiko is holding court (a.k.a. tending bar).

Next time you go into Boston Chops congratulate Kiko for the feature in The Boston Globe and take a moment to read the full article, Getting Salty with Frank ‘Kiko’ Dutra of  Boston Chops

P.S. Kiko – I agree with you. To this day I still miss Pho Republique and I love the colorful regulars like Judy who frequent Boston Chops SE.

Dry January

French, FranceOn a whim last year, I decided to abstain from any alcohol through the month of January. I have to admit I was curious if I could make it the full 31-days without drinking anything because I basically drink water, coffee, tea and wine. There were definitely times during the month where this proved challenging but overall, I was really surprised at how easy it was for me to do it. Perhaps it was all my training as a practicing Catholic when I was younger and asked to give up something for the 40-days of Lent that made the 31-days of January seem easy or maybe it was the fact that Sergio rarely drinks. Regardless, I’ve decided to “go dry” once again this month so I apologize in advance to Brix (my favorite wine shop) for the loss in revenue.

To anyone else who may be doing the same, I wish you luck and will have a toast in your honor on Friday, February 1st.

Cheers

Trump shutdown inspired cocktails for NYE parties

Since the Federal Government (specifically the US Congress and President) cannot seem to meet their minimum responsibilities of keeping the lights on I thought I would share these “Shutdown Cocktails” offered at D.C.’s Capitol Lounge. If the shutdown is still in effect on New Year’s Eve perhaps you may want to consider serving your own party themed shutdown cocktails.Trump shutdownFYI we are currently experiencing the third government shutdown in the Trump administration, which is amazing when you consider this has all happened while  Republicans control the Executive Branch and both the US Senate and House of Representatives. #Fail

The most searched for cocktail in your state

Food & wine, drinking, drinks, cocktailIn February Food & Wine shared this interesting graphic of the most popular cocktail in each state. The information was compiled by Versus Reviews, a consumer goods research organization, that released this visual guide after reviewing data from Google over the last 12 months to determine which were the most searched for cocktails in each state.

Although I mostly drink wine, I thought it was interesting that it aligned to my preference for cocktails. If I’m not drinking wine, I am inclined to order either a martini or gin & tonic which according to their research is the preferred cocktail for Massachusetts. What a strange coincidence that a G&T is also the preferred cocktail of Washington State – yet another similarity for those Amazon Executives to consider as they contemplate where to set up their HQ2. 

Cocktails with Opus Affair – May 15th

gay bostonOpus Affair is hosting their monthly cocktail party on Tuesday, May 15th. The social will be hosted at Miracle of Science which is just outside of Central Square.

All the fun begins around 6PM but Opus Affair asks that you RSVP so they can get an accurate count for the evening.  This month marks Opus Affair’s 10th anniversary so come and join this friendly group of artists and young professionals who enjoy and support the local arts scene.

Opus Affair Cocktail Social at Miracle of Science
Tuesday, May 15th from 6PM – 9PM
RSVP Here

Who’s serving during Grayson in Boston’s South End

On The Bar at Boston ChopsDespite winter storm Grayson (also being referred to as SNOWpocalypse 2018 on Twitter), there remain plenty of options to grab a drink, bite or both this afternoon and evening. I’ve added to EaterBoston’s listing of South End restaurants that will be open and offering treats to encourage you to venture out.

To read the full list of restaurants that will be open tonight in the Greater Boston area, visit EaterBoston here. Below is a larger selection of places in the South End than appear on EaterBoston’s listing.

Area Four Boston Get a free mystery pizza with purchase of any bottle of wine, large-format cocktail, or 64-ounce growler of beer (consumed at A4). Order two; get two pizzas. Allergies/dietary restrictions can be accommodated, but otherwise, the pizza will be a surprise.

Aquitaine Boston is open and serving both lunch and dinner today.

Barcelona Wine Bar “Rain, snow, or shine, we’re open in Boston.” Open from 4 p.m. until “late” with a special hot chocolate bar.

Bar Mezzana Open 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. (bar until 1 a.m.) with burgers and board games. Their delicious chicken parmezzana sandwich will be available.

Boston Chops Open Thursday and serving $1 wings all day.

Clery’s Open at 11 a.m. Thursday and serving $5 Tito’s drinks, and $8 burger with 16-ounce Coors Light, and $4 12-ounce Founders IPA.

Coppa Enoteca is open all day on Thursday.

Five Horses Tavern Open regular hours Thursday (11:30 a.m. to 12 a.m.)

The Gallows Open starting at 12 p.m. and serving a $6 chop suey special.

Kava Neo Taverna is open tonight and serving dinner.

Lions Tail Open regular hours on Thursday and offering half priced wings as well as some slider specials not to miss.

Metropolis Cafe is open for dinner on Thursday.

Myers + Chang Open regular hours (starting at 11:30AM) on Thursday.

PICCO Open regular hours serving lunch and dinner on Thursday.

South End Butery Open regular hours – look for Grayson Blizzard drink and food specials tonight.

SRV Boston Open Thursday and serving bottomless meatballs in red sauce for $4 from 5 p.m. to close.

Stephi’s on Tremont Open regular hours Thursday, starting at 11:30 a.m. Try “mom’s chicken soup” and a hot toddy today.

Tremont 647 & Sister Sorel Sister Sorel is opening early at 3PM and Tremont 647 will be open normal hours.

Toro Open regular hours on Thursday.

Trophy Room Open until 2 a.m. Thursday (kitchen until 10 p.m.); keep an eye out for spiked and spicy hot chocolate and bowls of lobster bisque.

Sam Adams tap room opens in JP

Photo from Samuel Adams website

Hey beer lovers, Samuel Adams beautiful brewery has just opened a tap room that will serve beer Monday through Saturday from 11AM to 8PM. And each Wednesday the tap room will host “Flight Night” when Sam Adams brewers will hand select four of their favorite beers from the brewery for you to taste.

The Samuel Adams brewery can be a little off the beaten path for people who visit Boston and the city certainly has no shortage of breweries to enjoy, but I love the historic mill that Samuel Adams calls home. If you love beer it really is worth visiting the brewery in Jamaica Plain. If you’ve never been take a tour then enjoy a few pints in their new tap room.

For more information visit samueladams.com/brewery-and-craft/tap-room.

Rooftop bar coming to new Southie hotel

Boston Cambria Hotel, Meyer Jabara Hotels Eater Boston reported last week that the new hotel going up in Southie just blocks from the South End line will have a rooftop bar, but don’t start making plans just yet because the hotel is not expected to open until early 2019.

Located just across from the Broadway Bridge which separates the South End from Southie, the hotel at 6 West Broadway will be part of a new condo complex with 159 rooms, a gym, and a rooftop bar. Specifics about the rooftop bar’s food and drink menus are not available but this section of Southie has a growing list of good restaurants (e.g. The Maiden and Worden Hall) so there is plenty of reason to have high hopes for this forthcoming watering hole that is stumbling distance from the South End and easily accessible to the Red Line.

Boston gay bars

gay bostonWith each new academic year, tens of thousands move to Boston for the first time. Unfortunately, Boston’s reputation for having a crappy nightlife if you are gay is painfully true but that doesn’t mean there are no gay bars or places to go.

Below is a list of venues that are currently active and worth checking out.

BOSTON GAY BARSLGBTQ boston bars, gay nightlife boston

Below is a listing of the remaining gay bars in Boston and Cambridge that I know about. Apologies for any bars I may have overlooked.

Boston Eagle 520 Tremont Street (South End) is not a leather bar despite its name. Often referred to as the Dirty Bird, this is one of Boston’s oldest running gay bars and mostly attracts an older crowd. Typically busiest after 12:30 / 1:00 on Friday and Saturday nights.

Cathedral Station 1222 Washington Street (South End) is Boston’s gay sports bar. The large space gets most crowded on summer evenings when their patio is open and during big sporting events when many come to watch. Cathedral also offers free parking (a rarity in Boston).

Club Cafe 209 Columbus Ave (South End / Back Bay) is Boston’s most popular gay bar. While its Napoleon Room has cabaret music, most come to socialize at the front bar or to dance. Mostly attracts a 20 and 30-something crowd.

dbar 1236 Dorchester Ave (Dorchester) Boston’s first gay bar in Dorchester attracts a younger crowd typically from the Savin Hill n’hood. They feature fun theme nights like Show Tune Tuesday and seasonal Tea Dances.

Jacques Cabaret 79 Broadway Street (Bay Village) is Boston’s only drag bar with shows 7-days a week as well as the location for a bi-monthly kink / fetish party called Fascination.

Machine / Ramrod 1254 Boylston Street (Fenway / Kenmore) Once upon a time Ramrod was Boston’s best leather bar bot those days are no more. Upstairs is Rarmrod and downstairs is the dance club, Machine: dancing, drag and more are options on different days.

Paradise 180 Mass Ave (MIT/Central Sq in Cambridge) is a two level dance club that also hosts drag shows and has go go boys. Their biggest night is typically Saturday when Chris Harris hosts Saga Saturdays.

Peggy O’Neill’s 1312 Dorchester Ave (Dorchester) is a pub that has also transitioned into a gay bar to serve the growing gay population in the neighborhood. Their biggest nights are Thursdays and Saturdays when they host dance parties.

The Alley 14 Pi Alley (Downtown Crossing) is located down a pedestrian alley and is a favorite for Boston Bears and Cubs. Special monthly parties like FUZZ offer dancing but this is typically more of a bar than a disco with trivia nights, pool tables and darts.

Trophy Room 26 Chandler Street (South End) is the former home of Boston’s gay bar, Fritz,  and is located on the first floor of the Chandler Inn. The bar is a cross between a gay sports bar and bistro that gets a cross-section of all ages and is popular with guys in the Back Bay and South End.

The State’s task force on alcohol looks to update Massachusetts draconian laws

Do you think Massachusetts alcohol laws are draconian and need updating? The State’s task force wants to hear from you – but here is the catch if you want to join the task force’s five groups (focus areas) complete this online survey by noon on Friday, July 7, to apply for a position.

The task force will be asked to identify and remedy problem areas across five broad categories by working with people like you (if you’re interested) to discuss proposed recommendations and action items in the following areas:

  • Alcohol Beverage Control Commission (ABCC) Operations and Resources
  • Industry Improvements
  • Licensing Process
  • Local Economic Development
  • Public Health, Safety and Prevention

More about the task force can be read here.

Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic is at Club Cafe, May 4th

gay boston, LGBT cocktail classic, Club CafeDo you love a great cocktail? Check out The Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic – the world’s largest annual LGBTQ bartending competition – is next week. This is the fourth consecutive year the competition has come to Boston.  Shown above is last year’s winner, Luis Arzuaga, who proudly represented Boston in the national competition down in Key West, Florida.

Do you think you have what it takes and want to learn more or perhaps you are a cocktail enthusiast? Either way, mark the date in your calendar and head over to Club Cafe on Thursday, May 4th.

What: The Stoli Key West Cocktail Classic – Boston competition
When: Thursday, May 4th from 8:00 – 11:00 PM
Where: Club Cafe
Details: RSVP Here

gay bostonAdmission to the event is free. Those who RSVP (see the link I included above) will also be eligible for the following:

  • The chance to win a trip to Key West Pride for two
  • Complimentary Stoli cocktails
  • The first 100 RSVP’d guests through the door upon check-in will receive a Stoli drink ticket plus a wrist band to sample all of the contestants cocktails and vote for their favorite bartender.

Opus Affair cocktail social tonight at Towne in Back Bay

Opus AffairLooking for something to do after work? Want to meet new, interesting people in Boston? Why not check out Opus Affair’s monthly cocktail social which takes place after work at Towne Stove & Spirits in the Back Bay?

There is no cost but Opus Affair does ask people to RSVP if possible so they can keep count and ensure the bar has enough staff – this group is very popular and attracts a large crowd. If you’re thinking of going RSVP – it takes just a minute.

Opus Affair Cocktail Social 6-9PM
Towne Stove & Spirits
900 Boylston Street, Boston
RSVP – Yes, I’m Going

About: Opus Affair is a mix of artists and art appreciators who get together each month for cocktails and to chat about the arts scene in Boston. Some come for serious networking, others come for fun. There’s no agenda—just a chance to have a few drinks with other like-minded folks. Bring some friends or come make some new ones.