“Light My Fire” $10
This radiant beverage (yes, even the ice is glowing), made with tequila, Curaçao, lemon and blueberry habanero, reflects the maximalist, retro vibes of The Woodstock, a bar that pays homage to the ’60s.
Creative cocktails put the “C” in ROKC (Ramen, Oysters, Kitchen, Cocktails), like this aptly named con-conch-tion of mezcal, tomato, house vinaigrette, wasabi and clam, perched regally on a mini-mountain of ice.
“Wake and Bake” $27
The Aviary NYC
Cocktails at the Aviary fall somewhere between science experiment and Rube Goldberg machine, as exhibited by this boozy interpretation of a morning coffee and bagel. Slice open the plastic bag to reveal the scent of an everything bagel and a glass of coffee- and orange-infused rye.
“Cucumber Cocktail” $13
The Standing Room
“Cucumber” may seem like a misnomer for a bell-pepper-bound drink, but the green gourd is indeed one of the ingredients in this mix—rounded out with spicy tequila and lime—served in a Long Island City comedy club.
These playful cocktails hark back to childhood juice pouches, but incorporate an adult upgrade of soju, real fruit (lychee, strawberry, mango or lemon) and LED ice cubes.
“High Octane” $135
Refuel with tequila, carmelized pineapple and jalepeño syrup from this self-serve pump, available as a large-format drink. This oversize concotion serves 6–8 at the Moxy Hotel’s rooftop bar.
“Shark Eye” $16
Mother of Pearl
No need to get in the water for a tropical experience. Instead go to Mother of Pearl for photogenic neo-tiki drinks like this one made with passion fruit, lemon, maraschino, dry Curaçao, bourbon, rye and a dash or two of Peychaud bitters for the “blood.”
“Twinkle Toes” $20
A blend of gin, apple brandy, cava, lemon and coriander is blooming this season at Vida Verde. The festive large-format punch serves two in a watering-can pitcher with flower-pot glasses on the restaurant’s rooftop Margarita Market lounge.
8 Showstopping Cocktails in NYC
NYC isn’t afraid of getting a little theatrical. Dazzling Broadway lights, soaring skyscapers and vibrant neon signs make it clear that showmanship and panache are part of the deal here—and even more so when it comes to nightlife.
The pizzazz-loving purveyors of these NYC cocktails recognize that an eye-catching presentation is just as essential to a drink as liquor, ice and a hearty shake. So if you’re ready to take your standard well drink up a notch, or five, turn to one of the City’s most over-the-top drinks. These libations flaunt exaggerated mechanisms, unusual vessels and glowing ice cubes. We guarantee they’re as fun to drink as they are to look at.