New York is the poster-child for highly specialized boutique businesses. Whether serving only gluten-free baked goods or variations of just mac 'n' cheese, our city takes the sugar-free, local, organic (cup) cake. More and more bars are catching the one-ingredient wave and stocking their shelves heavy with one or two spirit categories. Whether gin, tequila, or rum, your tastes can probably be suited somewhere in this super-niched-out city.
The Bar: Viktor and Spoils
The Spirit: Tequila and Mezcal
The Cocktail: Sweet, sour, and piquant all at the same time the La Grita De Dolores is strong and stirred with Crema De Mezcal, Tanqueray 10, Bittermans Chocolate Mole Bitters, garnished with a grapefruit peel.
The Bar: Noorman's Kil
The Spirit: Whiskey
The Cocktail: Anything, neat. Why mess with a good thing?
The Bar: Cienfuegos
The Spirit: Rum
The Cocktail: Rum cocktails can sometimes slide toward overly sweet, so go for a classic daiquiri taken to the next level with a high grade rum like Zacapa XO or Flor de Caña 15.
The Bar: Whitehall
The Spirit: Gin
The Cocktail: West Village newcomer gets the classic Eastside right with gin, mint, lime juice, and cucumber.
The Bar: Maison Premiere
The Spirit: Absinthe
The Cocktail: With a one-year birthday this week, Maison Premiere started out with a small collection of absinthes that has grown to a shelf of dozens, and a seasonally rotating cocktail list including the Bachelor, Meletti Amaro, Diplomatico Rum, St. George Absinthe and Angostura Bitters.
The Bar: Pravda
The Spirit: Vodka
The Cocktail: A New York mainstay, Pravda cornered the vodka market early on with house-infused versions like the Vladimir martini with fig-soaked vodka and Russian tea syrup.
The Bar: Char No. 4
The Spirit: Bourbon and American whiskey
The Cocktail: The walls are lined with proof (pun intended) that Char has one of the city's most impressive whiskey collections and cocktails to go alongside including the spice sweet Bourbon Bonnet, bourbon, pineapple, cherry, habanero, and brown sugar.
The Bar: Amor y Amargo
The Spirit: Amaros and bitters
The Cocktail: The Alpine Afternoon is a good, esoterically-minded, mid-winter warmer with Zirbenz Stone Pine Liqueur, Beckerovka, Killepitsch, Angostura Bitters and Bittermens Boston Bittahs.
The Bar: The Jake Walk
The Spirit: Brandy
The Cocktail: Though it's not specifically a cognac bar, this neighborhood mainstay has an incredible wealth of whiskey, wine and brandy. Ask for a flight to work your way around the category all at once.
The Bar: Nuela
The Spirit: Pisco
The Cocktail: This restaurant specializes in all things Latino including pisco, Peru's national spirit. The Espumosa Sour (strawberry-infused Piscó Porton, citrus, lemon-basil foam and Angostura Bitters) is delightfully girly, but just tangy enough to attract the un-fair sex if they deign to ignore the bright pink hue.
Above: A Tequila cocktail at Viktor and Spoils