RECOMMENDED: See the full guide to Cinco de Mayo in NYC
The task: Mixing a margarita
The pro: Philip Ward, co-owner of Mayahuel(304 E 6th St between First and Second Aves, 212-253-5888)
Rub the rim of a chilled glass with a wedge of lime. Turn the glass upside down and dip it into a small dish of kosher salt so that a fine line of salt adheres to the rim.
In a cocktail shaker, combine 3/4 oz freshly squeezed lime juice, 1 oz Cointreau and 2 oz white (unaged) tequila. Ward recommends 7 Leguas Blanco de Agave, and says Herradura Silver is another good option.
Add ice to the shaker. The bigger the ice, the better; for standard-size cubes from home freezer trays, use about five.
Shake for 5--10 seconds. The bigger the ice, the more vigorously you can shake; small cubes should be shaken less aggressively and for a shorter time, to prevent the drink from becoming too diluted.
Strain into the glass, and garnish with a fresh lime wedge.
Tip: The salt rim is optional, depending on taste. Ward's personal preference is to salt only half the rim.
Oenophiles will want to check out Wine 34, a wine bar and restaurant. Order a glass of wine ($12–16), or choose a bottle from the extensive list of more than 300 wines from around the world. Suds and spirit lovers will also be happy to see that Wine 34 has a draft beer and craft cocktail menu. As for food, the menu changes seasonally and focuses on fresh and local ingredients. Like any good wine bar, Wine 34 offers a customizable selection of cheese and charcuterie (one for $7, three for $16, five for $23) as well as appetizers like gulf shrimp with green peppercorn sauce ($14) and pan-seared scallops with asparagus risotto ($15). Entrees include lamb loin eye with lemon mashed potatoes and shaved Brussels sprouts ($30), grilled hangar steak with sauteed spinach, red wine sauce and truffle fries ($26) and a selection of flatbreads with toppings like prosciutto, ricotta and sweet onions ($12 for a small, $16 for a large).
Venue says: “It’s Wine thirty…four. Another place to relax and have a glass. We are proud to have received Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence for 2016.”