I thought delivery from Lao Sze Chuan was life-changing, but a new delivery option will bring cocktails from some great Chicago bartenders right to your door. Cocktail Courier, which started in New York last year, launched in Chicago last week, so I ordered a box to try it out in the office.
Cocktails are available in single boxes or as part of a weekly or biweekly subscription, if you constantly want a new cocktail arriving at your door. Currently, there are five options, although new cocktails will be available each month. There's Botanical Beach from Matty Eggleston (Nico Osteria), Pinup Sailor Daiquiri from Liz Pearce (The Drifter), Southern-style Old Fashioned from Peter Vestinos (The Betty), a Moscow Mule, and Date Nite, a cocktail from a New York bartender. Since I wanted to keep it local (and daiquiris are one of my favorite cocktails), I ordered Pearce's drink.
I placed the order on Thursday for Friday afternoon delivery between 2 and 4pm, but make sure you're available early—my delivery came at 1:20pm, and the delivery guy had to check my ID before he'd hand it over. The box comes with every ingredient you need, so I received Sailor Jerry spiced rum, Combier Pamplemousse Rose (a grapefruit liqueur), fresh lime juice, jalapeno simple syrup, celery bitters and a lime. When you place the cocktail order, you can also purchase the necessary tools, and the recipe clearly states what you need. Since we keep a shaker, jigger and cocktail glasses on hand at the office, I didn't need any additional tools.
There's a card with directions, but precise measurements and following directions is important, so the quality of our drinks varied depending on the bartending skill level of the staff member who made it. But everyone liked the box—we managed to get five cocktails out of it (it was supposed to make four), so at $39.96, which included delivery, cocktails were $8 each, which is much less expensive than drinks at the Drifter. This also would be a smart thing order for smaller cocktail parties, since the limes are squeezed and the simple syrup is ready, all you have to do is construct the cocktail.
Delivery is available Thursday–Saturday in two-hour windows from 2–10pm.