RECOMMENDED: All our listings for the best brunch in NYC
Buttermilk Channel, 524 Court St at Huntington St, Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn (718-852-8490)
What's in it: Tomato juice, Tabasco, pepper, celery salt, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, Sixpoint's Otis stout, Jameson
Why we like it: The whiskey and stout add a lip-smacking smokiness and surprising smoothness.
Buzz factor: Just enough, without the 3pm headache.
Anjou Pear and Darjeeling Fizz ($9)
Double Crown, 316 Bowery at Bleecker St (212-254-0350)
What's in it: Apple juice, Darjeeling tea syrup, Mathilde Poire cordial, lemon juice, prosecco, a slice of Anjou pear
Why we like it: This easy-sipper is given nuance by Darjeeling tea and elegance by fragrant pear.
Buzz factor: Mild—order it when around parents or children.
Bourbon Tea Cooler ($12)
Freemans, Freeman Alley off Rivington St between Bowery and Chrystie St (212-420-0012)
What's in it: Jim Beam, pomegranate syrup, PG Tips brand tea
Why we like it: The gently sweetened thirst-quencher ably masquerades its liquor.
Buzz factor: Watch out. These go down easy. Maybe too easy.
Dark-Chocolate Russian Alcoholic Egg Cream ($11)
Schiller's Liquor Bar, 131 Rivington St at Norfolk St (212-260-4555)
What's in it: U-bet chocolate syrup, Stoli Vanil, Kahla, milk, seltzer
Why we like it: The fizzy, flavorful spin on the NYC classic is as invigorating as it is intoxicating.
Buzz factor: Sweet as candy, deadly as chloroform.