Wednesday, July 17, 2013

New York's Proudest

If you look up the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority Police it says they’re New York’s Proudest. But that’s bullshit. Bartenders are New York’s proudest motherfuckers.

Whenever a bartender doesn’t know how to make a drink, this is what he says: “It’s been a long time since I’ve made one of those.” And he doesn’t ask you how to make it. He waits for you to tell him, or to order something else. And as you’re telling him, he pretends to remember.

Last night I drank with Jim, in Midtown, at the bar of a restaurant I think I’d been to many years ago, with Aimee. The food back then was terrible—overpriced, butter-saturated. This time the drinks, at least, were fine. Jimmy ordered a negroni and since I’d been drinking scotch at a work party all afternoon, I ordered a Rob Roy.

“It’s been a long time since I’ve made one of those,” the bartender said uncertainly.

“It’s scotch—”

“Scotch, triple sec...”

“No,” I said. “Scotch, sweet vermouth.”

“Right! Right.”

“And a dash of bitters.”