Get acquainted with mezcal at Blueprint in Park Slope, where tequila’s sophisticated sister is the booze of choice.
The bar’s Oaxacan cocktail ($12) — a shaken blend of Los Nahuales Mezcal, buckwheat honey from the farmer’s market and fresh-squeezed lime juice — is really shows off co-owner Regina Christiansen’s liquor wizardry: the smokey sweetness makes this drink the thinking man’s margarita.
“Classic cocktails are a formula,” Christiansen said. “So once you’re comfortable with that, you can play around — and it becomes a fun thing.”
The elegant-but-unpretentious bar feels like a neighborhood secret with a vaguely speakeasy vibe, and is run by friendly Irishman Rory Dwyer, who also owns Commonwealth and High Dive on Fifth Avenue.
Other masterfully mixed cocktails include the Kentucky Waltz, made with bourbon, ceylon tea and mint; The Swedish Monk, a gin, pear cider and Chartreuse concoction; and The Kickstarter, which includes dark rum, espresso and coffee bitters. Not to mention a simple Old Fashioned that will knock your socks off.
The place also offers a small menu of edibles, including rabbit potpie, apple bread pudding and grass-fed beef bourguignon.
Blueprint [196 Fifth Ave. at Union Street in Park Slope, (718) 622-6644].Reach reporter Natalie O'Neill at noneill@cn