Let’s make one thing clear: Tending bar
is an art. And, as in any artistic discipline, the work of the masters is preserved for future admiration. Or, in this case, future drunken nights. Author and cocktail historian Dr. David Wondrich understands this, which is why he’s teamed up with Jack McGarry (Tales of the Cocktail’s International Bartender of the Year, 2013—the youngest recipient ever) to present The John Morrissey Memorial Lectures on the history of Great New York Bar-Keepers of the Nineteenth Century. The five-part series kicks off tonight with “The Pioneers — Cato Alexander, Orsamus Willard and Shed Sterling,” a send-up to the suspendered, handle-bar mustachioed forefathers of modern mixology. But a stuffy history lesson this is not. Wondrich and McGarry will whip up each keep’s signature drink, prepared the way it would have been a century ago. An evening of copious libations and hors d’oeuvres is probably the best way to honor the city’s bartending all stars.

Wed., July 9, 6 p.m., 2014