The most popular drink so far: the Blazin' Cucumber -- named after co-owner Blaise McMackin -- which combines a house-made basil simple syrup, fresh-squeezed lime juice and fresh muddled cucumber with Nolet's gin. The result is a sweet, tangy-tart libation that is as close to a refreshing summer cooler as I've come across. Served in an oversized snifter, it's garnished with a sliver of cucumber and giant lime wheel, an intense neon green hue the result of a potent housemade basil syrup. It's almost too pretty to drink. Almost.
Beer cocktails, a popular and growing trend, are also on the menu at Tap 42. The emphasis here is on craft beer cocktails, each a collaborative effort between Tap 42's creative director and beer expert, Lauren Bowen, and Nast. Using high-quality spirits, fresh ingredients, and offbeat flavor combinations, Nast and Bowen's quintessential craft beer cocktail is their "Drafted Old Fashioned." A blend of Magic Hat #9, R(1) rye whiskey, bitters and -- what has perhaps never been done before Tap 42 -- an extra hit of hops from Nast's own creation: house-infused beer simple syrup. It's served "up" with a single ice "ball" -- a giant sphere of ice that keeps your drink cold without turning it into a watered-down travesty.