THE DRINKER’S MANIFESTO
1. Drinking is fun.
2. Drinking is everything you do in a bar, including talking, going to the john, and overhearing the conversations of others.
3. Craft cocktails tend to take a long time to make. Mixology.
4. At a place that serves craft cocktails, a drinker may order a second drink before he has finished the first. Logistics.
5. Bars are not temples of mixology.
6. Drinkers aren’t supplicants.
7. Although when the bartender at the temple of mixology puts half your manhattan in a separate vessel and nestles that vessel in a bowl of crushed ice and places it next to your glass? That’s worthy of praise. Very cold cocktails always are.
8. However, sometimes you don’t want a craft cocktail, because sometimes it doesn’t taste better. Sometimes it’s raining and your flight is delayed and you’re 1,000 miles from home, and you just want the lady wearing the maroon vest behind the bar to pour some gin into a glass with some tonic, and you just want to drink it and smile and think of home.
9. There is no shame in ordering a double for two dollars more.
10. A drinker should be tended to. If a bartender serving a modest crowd does not ask if you want another drink upon your finishing your drink, then that bartender is a bad bartender.
11. It is not known who supplies the restroom graffiti, but their efforts are worthy of appreciation.
12. A bar may not always improve a mood. But it can make it worse.
13. A drink can improve a mood. Because it is made with alcohol, which is a drug.
14. Sometimes a bartender’s mustache is just a mustache. Usually not, but sometimes. Depends what kind of bar you’re in.
15. You can chuckle at the presence of house-made bitters — we all have. But know this: The house-made bitters are terrific. And they improve a drink.
16. And look, they’re not going to the trouble of making bitters because they don’t care how your drink tastes.
17. The best bartender conversations do not involve the discussion of spirits.
18. If you get even the slightest feeling that the bartender feels he is doing you a favor by mixing you a drink, you are in the wrong bar.
19. With a few exceptions, the best bartender is a smiling bartender. Because drinking is fun.
From Esquire’s June/July 2013 issue.