I sat down at the bar at Cherry Point (664 Manhattan Avenue), trying to forget my post-election blues. I ordered a glass of wine and began to appreciate the decor and soft lighting that makes Cherry Point such a laid back, hip place. Suddenly I was seized by an urge for a cocktail. I asked the bartender Steve Walkiewicz if he had a personal favorite and a smile crossed his face and his eyes gleamed as he told me I had to try his very own creation called “A Sensitive Man.” Walkiewicz quickly went to work pouring the ingredients and then vigorously shaking them. He served it straight up, and the presentation was truly a thing of beauty—chocolate bitters on top of egg whites, looking ever so much like a barrista’s capuccino.
When conjuring images of legendary bartenders, you might be reminded of Tom Cruise doing the Hippy Hippy Shake in Cocktail. While their scene is more chic and the cocktails are more artfully crafted, the bartenders at The Regal in Williamsburg are having no less fun (and are arguably no less charming) than Tom Cruise’s character in that film.
We stopped by on a Sunday night a few weeks ago to meet and drink with Adam Lipiec, one of The Regal’s star bartenders. Adam’s a native of Poland and had bartended in Europe—in his home country, Ibiza, and London—before coming to New York. Aside from immediately noticing that Adam’s a genuinely friendly tall drink of water, you’ll spot him mixing drinks with incredible flair. He gracefully tosses a napkin and twirls it around to have it touch down delicately on the back of his hand as if it’s a butterfly landing on a flower petal. Drinks get shaken with a vigorous flourish, and shakers flip in the air and get thrown behind his back with the ease of a master juggler. Some of the cocktails require use of a blowtorch; if you’re in a fiery mood, get The Spitfire—sotol, pineapple, lime, jalapeño infused agave, for $10. Continue reading
A cool new web series called Barmaids hit the Internet last month. You should check it out. Coming from the creative team of Anna Callegari, Caralyn Stone (who both star in the series) and Brett Haley (who directs), this series looks into the life of two female bartenders. Continue reading
So its January 2nd, the official day to be sick of hearing people say happy new year, and I’m walking back to my apartment. It’s almost midnight, and I’m making the decision that the hoodie/peacoat layered combo is not working out, and I’m freezing my tits off. I have a wool overcoat at home that is my final defense against the cold in the wintertime, and it is about to be deployed. Earlier tonight, I was remarking to a friend at the People’s Improv Theater, at how I’d gamble his wool trench coat locks out the winter real well. Layering is cold weather wears for poor people, since we can’t always dial out the cold with our warmest outerlayer, nor afford parkas. I had just recently upgraded from the old denim jacket I had wrapped around my hoodie, and it was losing the weather battle. This was while heading home from a bar I work at on the Greenpoint/Williamsburg border called Spritzenhaus. Today, the bar was particularly quiet, and since I’ve been working every day since the weekend, I’ve been unable to fully shake this Chicago cold my girlfriend got me this Christmas. The only big group we had was my buddy Jen’s writers group that was meeting to expand their contributor base, which definitely helped my cause. Still this felt like the longest shift possible, and I got out early on account of the light bar traffic. I grabbed myself a Jever Pilsner, which I love, and found myself over by Jen’s Greenpointers party. Before I knew it I was offering to contribute some words as a local bartending greenpoint resident. As well as gushing over my awesome roommate Nithya, they loved this idea, and said I could use the blog as a sounding board for all the events I’m a part of, like my bands (No Way, The Golden Age of Radio), my improv groups (Milhaus, Backfat, People’s Improv Theater), or my live karaoke band (Infinity Spaceship @ St. Vitus). So I think I’m gonna do it. I hope you like reading it. My name is Brian Lucrezia.
Wouldn’t it be fun to learn how to make your own fancy cocktails at home? Here is your chance to attend a boozy and educational event presented by Edible Brooklyn at the Brooklyn Brewery (79 N 11th St) next Wednesday 8/22 at 8pm – so you can shake it like the best of them! You will even learn how to make beer cocktails! More info.
To enter: Comment below on your favorite cocktail.
Deadline to enter: Monday, August 20, 2012 at 11:59pm.
One winner will be chosen randomly and announced on Tuesday, August 21, 2012.