We'll Drink to That

Ten phenomenal Chicago cocktails--and how to make them

We can authoritatively declare: There has never been a better time to drink in Chicago.

To create this list of Tasting Table Chicago's Best Cocktails of 2011, we sat down with 10 of the best bartenders in the city and asked them what they were most excited about. We then drank up the responses.

One found strange beauty in the combination of two seemingly disparate liquors. Another gave a tiki drink a dose of bitter sophistication; another decided that what one of the most respected cocktails in history really needed was a little sorbet. After years of trend-following slavishness, we've reached a point where nothing is out and everything is in.

So we made flavor our bottom line. Each drink had to taste so good, we couldn't wait to order another. Also, we had to be so moved as to figure out how to make the same drinks at home.

Drinking through the top 10 will lead you from The Drawing Room and Henri to Morso, Blackbird and beyond. Making them will have you reaching for Cognac, Aperol and port, and putting tequila where it's never been before. 

Here's to new experiences–and another year of great drinking.