Published on May 25th, 2013 | by Jackie


A Taste of Local Spirits at “NYC Distilled”

Foursquare is all about what is local to you and making the most of where you are. It comes then as no surprise that they hosted a sampling of local NYC spirits and bites called “NYC, Distilled” at their headquarters in Soho.

Foursquare called on the edgy LES tiki bar, Painkiller (PKNY), to create a special custom 4 drink menu for the event. Each cocktail featured one or more of the represented local spirits (listed below). It was nice to see the distillers trying the cocktail menu and being on the other side of the table for a change!

Henshaw’s Punch

Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur

Dorothy Parker Gin (NY Distilling Company)

Greenhook Ginsmiths

Owney’s Rum (The Noble Experiment)

Sorel (Jack From Brooklyn)


All of the cocktails were fabulous, but the biggest take away of the afternoon came from the distillers who took a moment to share with us all what they do. They really are part of a revolution of sorts. Local distilling is something that has been detached from New York since the Prohibition era. These guys are bringing it back. When spirits are made in small batches as these are, there is so much more room to create something unique and to refine iterations. Large scale producers just don’t have that kind of flexibility. Allen Katz of New York Distilling Company summed it up perfectly, “We try to add to existing categories things that people aren’t familiar with.” They really do just that.

behind the bar

The best part for all of us is that because we have these emerging local distillers right next door, they are accessible. Whether it be a tasting at your nearby liquor store, a cocktail event or a visit to their distillery, I urge you to get to know more about them. Need a few ideas?

  • Take a tour at New York Distilling Company. They are now offering weekend tours from 3pm-5pm with live music at 4pm. In addition, you can check out The Shanty, their fabulous cocktail bar attached to the distillery.  Why wouldn’t you go?! 
  • Get yourself a bottle of Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur. It is one of those spirits that all you need is to put it on ice with a splash of Perrier and you have a simple, but fabulous cocktail ready to go.
  • Try the Red Tempest at DBGB  – made with Sorel, rum, ginger beer and lime.
  • Hop on over to the distillery at The Noble Experiment for a $10 tour & taste. Tours are on Saturdays at 2pm and 4pm.
  • Run, don’t walk (but seriously, run) and get your hands on a bottle of Greenhook Ginsmiths Beach Plum Gin. Put aside the fact that I grew up down the block from their distillery and their cocktail names all remind me of home, the stuff is amazing. Their Beach Plum variety is a limited seasonal edition with only 1,800 bottles up for grabs. Release is set for early June, so stay tuned in with Dipsology for exact details on how to score a bottle.  While we wait, drool over these delicious recipes.

No matter what you choose, I promise that when you learn the story behind the spirits, you’ll appreciate each sip just a little bit more.

The Cocktail Menu at “NYC Distilled”

Henshaw’s Punch
Owney’s Rum
Fresh Lemon Juice
Fresh Pineapple Juice
House-made Orgeat

Dorothy Parker Gin
Fresh Lime Juice
Simple Syrup
Raspberry Puree
House-made Ginger Syrup

Ginger Lemonade
Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur
Owney’s Rum
Lemon Juice
House-made Cinnamon Syrup

Greenhook Gin
Barrow’s Intense Ginger Liqueur
Sweet Vermouth


Photos Credit: Peter Lawton. Courtesy of the Manhattan Cocktail Classic.

Jackie is a freelance writer with a focus on food & cocktail events in NYC (and beyond). She shares all of her latest finds on her blog One Girl’s Dish. You can also follow her on Twitter at @onegirlsdish

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  1. Pingback: Summertime & the Gin is Beachy: Greenhook Ginsmiths Beach Plum Gin - One Girl's Dish

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