When it comes to traveling, everybody wants to feel like a local. How to go about this? Grabbing a drink in a new city is not a bad place to start. Read on to learn what to order at the bar and where.
Rec 31, Barcelona
Forget red wine. Spain is all about vermouth. The red (or white) wine flavored with aromatic herbs is made chiefly in France and Italy, but spots like Bormuth in Barcelona prove its popularity in points west. Head here for tapas and the sweet stuff, served over rocks of ice with a wedge of orange and a salty olive.
Galleria Vittorio Emanuele Angolo Piazza Duomo, Milan
Thought the only true Italian aperitif was the mighty Aperol Spritz? Learn your lesson at Camparino and leave a true insider, after ordering a negroni (gin, vermouth, Campari) in the historic, art-deco setting. The drink is only meant to whet the appetite, so save room for pizza, pasta and more. Any excuse, really.
Rue de la Fontaine au Roi 35, Paris
In French culture, the aperitif is sacred, but in Paris it has become almost a noisy celebration of the happy hour. To avoid the crowds, head to La Caravane for a more relaxed affair. Once there, order crème de cassis topped with champagne – a Kir Royale, s’il vous plait. The French drink it as an aperitif and so should you.
Kydathineon 41, Athens
You know what we’re going to say, don’t you? Ouzo. Greece is well known for its ouzo liqueur, but how many others have you tried? Brettos Bar is the center of liqueurs in Athens, hidden in the very middle of the city center. IF it’s doable, Brettos has it. They’ve made a liqueur out of almost anything – watermelon, caramel, raspberry, cocoa, you name it.
Kristen Bernikows Gade 4, Copenhagen
Throughout Scandinavia, celebratory occasions call for shots of infused vodka accompanied by a traditional song. Jolly, eh? In Denmark, this will almost always be Aquavit. Check out 1105, an instant hit on the Copenhagen cocktail scene. The bar is helped by Hardeep Rehal, two-time Danish Bartender of the Year, who serves up his infamous Cucumber Yum-Yum, a pink concoction of gin, Aquavit infused with raspberries, honey and cucumber.
1170 Broadway, New York
Ah, the martini. A cocktail made from gin (not vodka) and dry vermouth, typically garnished with an olive or a twist of lemon. From 19th-century journalist H. L. Mencken who called the martini “the only American invention as perfect as the sonnet” to Sex and the City, no drink is more quintessentially New York.
1 Kendall Square, Boston
Chicago is full of architectural wonders, but be sure to sample something colder than the streets of the Windy City. While Cambridge Brewing company has earned itself a reputation for its delicious, innovative beers (you can watch the brewing processes through a window behind the bar), its food menu is not to be missed, especially brunch.