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I recently wrote my definitive review of “The World’s Best” cocktail bar, Employees Only. (It was voted world’s best by a small group of cocktail bar owners who incestuously meet each year n New Orleans then make documentaries about themselves, all funded by the liquor industry.). I basically said that it was an annoying place and that all of these cocktail bars are a fad that have run their course.
Today, the most influential food critic in the city, Pete Wells of the NYT, wrote an essay complaining that restaurants are creating cocktail menus that are too long, and that offer lousy drinks. Great minds think alike.
Mr. Wells wrote, “Lately, an awful lot of the cocktails I’ve had in restaurants have landed with a splat in the “not good” category. Some are rudely sour, or pointlessly bitter, or ickily sweet, or phonily complicated, or just too reminiscent of a spoonful of Robitussin with a hangnail of lemon peel floating on top. Others aren’t actively bad in any of those ways, but they don’t glide down the back of your throat, either; they’re simply not good.
New York City’s restaurants are in the midst of an epidemic of not-goodness. Sit down in any new dining room, and you are handed a cocktail list. Each drink on this document will have one ingredient you have heard of and seven that were apparently named after distant planets.”