When you think wine, Texas Hill Country probably doesn’t leap to
Hotel Bars in NYCHotel Buzz: In-Room Bartenders
There was a time when hotel bars were lonesome little spots, with maybe one or two guys in loosened ties sipping low-grade scotch while a gameshow flickered overhead. Now, of course, it’s the opposite – and hotel bars are the buzziest joints in town. What started out as elegant gin-gin mule cocktails at the leather-lined Carlyle has evolved into rooftop grinding alongside Lindsay Lohan at The Standard.
And now hotels are turning the corner again, this time sending their star bartenders to your room to mix cocktails. (Sometimes a martini tastes best when you’re in your silk robe.) Top hotels around NYC have been expanding their room-service menu: At the Surrey on the Upper East Side, a private bartender will deliver cocktail ingredients to your room – they’ll make the first round, and the rest is up to you. And, The James in SoHo offers private mixology lessons in your suite.
How about a bartender creating a cocktail especially for your hotel? Yes, that too. Alex Kratena, master mixologist at Artesian Bar, at Langham London, was named 2012 International Bartender of the Year – and this spring, he’s bringing his considerable talents stateside. Kratena is embarking on a mini tour to Langham hotels around the U.S. (through April 5), creating a cocktail for each property, which will be served until the end of 2014. At the Langham Pasadena, the Social Club cocktail is inspired by the city’s rose gardens, made with vodka, Lillet, vetiver and rose water. In Chicago, try a Back to the Future, a potent mix of Talister, port, cacao and raspberry. And at the Langham Place, Fifth Avenue in NYC, toast the night with a Lady Pink – named after the New York City graffiti artist – with fino sherry, rhubarb and agave. Cheers.
(Photo courtesy of Langham Place, Fifth Avenue)