One of the best places to see the biggest trends and best ideas in cocktail-making is at the Manhattan Cocktail Classic. Dozens of the best bartenders (or, if you prefer, mixologists) in the world line the floors of the New York Public Library to serve 3,000 people in black tie, cocktail dress, and, in the case of Big Boi who performed at the event, gold chains.
We did our best to try all the best cocktails there, but since there were over 100 different drinks, we could only sample a small percentage of all that was offered. Here are our favorite 11 cocktails that we'll be trying to recreate at home.
Best Use of Vegetables: The Sunset Stalker
If you've ever had a bloody mary with extra celery you already have an idea of what the vegetable can bring to a drink. The Sunset Stalker, however, proved to us that celery and vodka are made for each other. This simple cocktail – one of the most dangerously drinkable we had all night – celebrates mixing our vegetables, with sugar-beet Industry vodka, a celery tonic (adding a bit of sweetness), and celery ribbon. This will be our go-to drink this summer.
The Sunset Stalker
1.5 oz Industry Standard Vodka
1 oz ICD's House-Made Celery Tonic (or heavily muddle a stalk or so of celery, double-strain into a cocktail shaker and add one dash of an anise liquor like Herbsaint)
Credit: Bonnie Burke