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The Cocktail Heatmap: Where to Drink Right Now

In honor of Cocktail Week, here's an updated Cocktail Heatmap, highlighting hot new cocktail destinations.

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In honor of Cocktail Week, here's an updated Cocktail Heatmap, highlighting hot new cocktail destinations where you should start drinking immediately. This map includes restaurants and bars that have opened within the past year. Please note that the numbers are geographically organized, not ranked.

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Rosebud American Kitchen & Bar

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[Photo: Katie Chudy]

Earls Kitchen + Bar

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Sure, Earls is a large chain based in Canada, but the cocktail program isn't a soulless mega-list of fruit-based "martinis" with cutesy names. Cameron Bogue, an alum of the Boulud empire, heads up the program across the whole company, offering solid renditions of classics (like Bees Knees, served in a glass bear-shaped honey jar) and a few creative twists (like Cabin Fever, a crown royal and tawny port concoction served in a blue camping cup and garnished with a pine cone). [Photo: Provided]

Brass Union

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What was once the Precinct, a solid bar and music venue in Somerville's Union Square, was reborn this year as Brass Union, minus the music but with a greater focus on food and drink (and games like giant Jenga). On the drink side, beverage director Paulo Pereira is serving up a creative menu sectioned off for "beginners," "intermediates," and "experts." For example, "beginners" may opt for a drink like Rum & Smoke (Bully Boy Boston rum, house-smoked lime juice, housemade orgeat, ginjinha) while "experts" could try the Green Line Extension (bourbon, brandy, green chartreuse, angostura bitters) and probably drink quite a few before the extension ever actually materializes. [Photo: Rachel Leah Blumenthal]

Alden & Harlow

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This hugely popular Harvard Square spot has boasted a thriving bar scene since opening early this year. Beverage director Seth Freidus offers a frequently changing array of creative cocktails, including one on draft (and a house bitter on draft as well). Since fall's here, try This'll Be The Day, made with a house sweet potato vermouth, or try the scotch-and-smoked-squash Burning Leaves. Or dream of warmer days with one of several cocktails that contain a house falernum. [Photo: Meg Jones Wall]

[Photo: Katie Chudy]
[Photo: Katie Chudy]

Pastoral

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[Photo: Katie Chudy]

Audubon Boston

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The Trina's Starlite Lounge team is behind this reincarnation of Audubon Circle, so you know the bar program's going to be good. (Plus, that pointy center table that caused countless drunken bruises disappeared when the new owners took over and revamped the place.) Celebrate the season with flavors like beet syrup, spiced pear, and cranberry bitters. [Photo: Katie Chudy]

Merrill & Co.

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[Photo: Katie Chudy]

Wink & Nod

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[Photo: Katie Chudy]

Rosebud American Kitchen & Bar

[Photo: Katie Chudy]

Earls Kitchen + Bar

Sure, Earls is a large chain based in Canada, but the cocktail program isn't a soulless mega-list of fruit-based "martinis" with cutesy names. Cameron Bogue, an alum of the Boulud empire, heads up the program across the whole company, offering solid renditions of classics (like Bees Knees, served in a glass bear-shaped honey jar) and a few creative twists (like Cabin Fever, a crown royal and tawny port concoction served in a blue camping cup and garnished with a pine cone). [Photo: Provided]

Brass Union

What was once the Precinct, a solid bar and music venue in Somerville's Union Square, was reborn this year as Brass Union, minus the music but with a greater focus on food and drink (and games like giant Jenga). On the drink side, beverage director Paulo Pereira is serving up a creative menu sectioned off for "beginners," "intermediates," and "experts." For example, "beginners" may opt for a drink like Rum & Smoke (Bully Boy Boston rum, house-smoked lime juice, housemade orgeat, ginjinha) while "experts" could try the Green Line Extension (bourbon, brandy, green chartreuse, angostura bitters) and probably drink quite a few before the extension ever actually materializes. [Photo: Rachel Leah Blumenthal]

Alden & Harlow

This hugely popular Harvard Square spot has boasted a thriving bar scene since opening early this year. Beverage director Seth Freidus offers a frequently changing array of creative cocktails, including one on draft (and a house bitter on draft as well). Since fall's here, try This'll Be The Day, made with a house sweet potato vermouth, or try the scotch-and-smoked-squash Burning Leaves. Or dream of warmer days with one of several cocktails that contain a house falernum. [Photo: Meg Jones Wall]

Viale

[Photo: Katie Chudy]

Parla

[Photo: Katie Chudy]

Pastoral

[Photo: Katie Chudy]

Audubon Boston

The Trina's Starlite Lounge team is behind this reincarnation of Audubon Circle, so you know the bar program's going to be good. (Plus, that pointy center table that caused countless drunken bruises disappeared when the new owners took over and revamped the place.) Celebrate the season with flavors like beet syrup, spiced pear, and cranberry bitters. [Photo: Katie Chudy]

Merrill & Co.

[Photo: Katie Chudy]

Wink & Nod

[Photo: Katie Chudy]

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