Rare Labels

Small-production booze at Bar Keeper

Joe Keeper's store Bar Keeper has been a reliable source for the glassware and tools associated with a host of historic cocktails–from absinthe paraphernalia to the vintage glassware used as props in Don Draper's office. The Silver Lake store is the go-to spot for all things cocktail, but always sans alcohol.

But after seventeen months of jumping through bureaucratic hoops, Bar Keeper started selling booze last Saturday.

The stock at Bar Keeper tends toward smaller producers and more obscure bottles, filling a retail niche that exists between the liquor shelf at The Varnish and the aisles of BevMo. In addition to a fine selection of gins, whiskeys and vodkas, you can pick up a bottle of the Indonesian rum-like Batavia Arrack ($32), white Versinthe absinthe from Provence ($66), three different Del Maguey single-village mezcals (starting at $44), French A.O.C. vermouth from Chambery ($15), and much more.

And if you don't have the slightest idea of how to louche a glass of absinthe–never mind mix a proper Manhattan–Bar Keeper, by way of the greater-L.A. cocktail community, is here to help: Come November, the store will be selling holiday gift boxes complete with recipes and the various liquors, bitters, tools and glassware needed to make a given drink. Separate boxes for classic cocktails as well as area bartenders' favorite drinks will soon be available.

Bar Keeper, 3910 W. Sunset Blvd., Silver Lake; 323-669-1675 or barkeepersilverlake.com