Ingredients: Bulleit bourbon, Averna, Aperol, lemon juice, grapefruit shrub
Background: Lead bartender Dave Miller riffs on modern classic Paper Plane—itself a play on bathtub gin standby the Last Word. Clink’s iteration swaps Nonino for Sicilian digestive Averna, adds a Champagne vinegar-based shrub and nods to its inspiration, which New Yorker Sam Ross named after British rapper M.I.A.’s 2007 megahit.
Taste: The Averna brings deep herbal, orange and caramel notes, while the grapefruit shrub brightens things up. “After it warms up just a bit, those flavors—that grapefruit, that acidity, that sweetness—really start to pop,” Miller says.
Pair it with: Chef Anthony Dawodu’s just-added Cuban pulled-pork sliders with bacon jam ($10).
In other news: The Liberty’s lobby watering hole recently got its first facelift since opening eight years ago. The new look includes a longer bar, bigger TV screens and better lighting.
Round two: “I hate to do another shrub cocktail,” Miller says, but order the Seven Oaks ($16) anyway. This concoction boasts both bourbon and gin, some bartender’s ketchup”—better known as St. Germain— lemon and a strawberry-peppercorn shrub, which gives the drink a nice pink hue.
Be our guest: Being a local at a hotel bar has its perks. “You never know who you’re going to sit next to—a celebrity, an artist, your neighbor—and you never have the same conversation twice,” Miller says, adding, “People open up because they’re never going to see you again.”
Clink The Liberty Hotel, 215 Charles St., Boston (617-224-4004) clinkrestaurant.com