“So this gin has been infused with elderflower,” bartender Nathan Point said, “although it’s pretty subtle,” a statement which analysts say means you won’t be able to taste it. “And it’s from Japan, where they’re doing a lot of interesting things with gin right now,” Point added, which means you’re also paying for the import fees.
“As a mixologist, it’s important for me to know the provenance of all the spirits I serve,” the bartender continued, before launching into a lengthy history of gin’s use in Asia while ignoring your repeated requests to see a food menu.
The Top Hat, which styles itself a speakeasy and insists that its customers dress in authentic 1920s clothing and announce a codeword into an intercom before being allowed in, doesn’t have a single drink that costs less than 18 dollars. Customers who ask for a domestic beer are escorted out by security.
“A lot of people ask why we use hand cut spherical ice,” Point lied, “and that’s because it chills the gin far more effectively than a geometrically inferior cube. “And naturally we use period appropriate tonic water with plenty of deliciously bitter quinine, not that sweetened Canada Dry crap a mere bartender would inflict on your palate. Of course, none of that means anything if I don’t get the ratio of gin-to-tonic correct down to the microlitre.”
Point then adjusted his bowtie and silk vest before spinning a jar of Maraschino cherries in midair for no reason.
At press time, Point had used three Erlenmeyer flasks, two beakers, and a pipette to serve you a watered-down drink you’ll finish in two gulps, and had moved on to making a “Havana-authentic Cuba libre” by slicing a homegrown organic lime with a Damascus steel knife, adding it to a Jack and Coke filtered through a humidifier, and charging you $31.25.