Ingredients: GrandTen South Boston Irish Whiskey, Lapsang Souchong-infused honey, fresh lemon juice
Taste: “Even though there are really only three ingredients, there’s a lot of flavor,” explains bar manager Steve Schnelwar, who pairs the whiskey—lighter and ripe for summertime sippin’—with the tea’s leather, cigar and tobacco notes. “I always refer to it as being very much like ‘Dad’s old armchair,’ ” says the 80 Thoreau alum, adding that it’s a great choice for scotch and mezcal drinkers.
All the fixin’s: Schnelwar has been busy making homemade syrups, shrubs and tinctures since the opening of GrandTen Distilling’s new cocktail bar last month, working with what he dubs “golden handcuffs,” as the license requires all alcohol be made onsite. “I have the opportunity to go make exactly the flavor profile, the consistency, the sweetness level that I want. There’s a lot of freedom,” Schnelwar says. In the coming months, keep an eye out for new infusions, like a Campari-esque concoction using GrandTen’s Craneberry liqueur, and even new spirits, including a more rye-heavy whiskey.
Not a whiskey fan? The menu has lighter options for those looking for something a little easier to sip. Go for the Southie Mule ($9), a mix of lime juice, spicy ginger beer and GrandTen’s Fire Puncher vodka, distilled with chipotle pepper.
Atmosphere: “I look at it like we’re the kids with the coolest basement on the block,” Schnelwar says. There’s shuffleboard, foosball and game boards aplenty, with spaghetti Westerns and kung fu flicks playing above the concrete-top bar, which owners Matthew Nuernberger and Spencer McMinn hand-poured. They also built some of the tables and shelves in the space, which opens at 4 pm on Thursdays and Fridays and 1 pm on the weekends.
GrandTen Bar 383 Dorchester Ave., Boston (617-269-0497) grandten.com/bar