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Cover by Ryan Burger

Welcome to our inaugural Cocktail Issue. Compiled in celebration of the third annual Cocktail Week (Oct 14-18), which is like Restaurant Week but for booze, this issue features stories dedicated to all aspects of cocktail culture. From tiki life to the battle for the soul of the martini, we’ve got you covered. Shake or stir yourself a cold one, kick back, and enjoy.

Cocktail Week itself (#FWCW19) is a blast. It starts Monday at Lola’s Trailer Park (2735 W 5th St, 817-759-9100) with Texas Spirits. From 6 to 9pm, sample delights from Blackland Distillery, Balcones, Calamity Gin, Nue Vodka, and Still Austin while enjoying live music from Raised Right Men and bites by Dayne’s Craft Barbecue.

For Bourbon Bash – 6-9pm Tuesday at Thompson’s (900 Houston St, 817-882-8003) – there will be three levels of tastings. Featured brands include Wild Turkey Longbranch, Balcones Pot Still, and more, with food from Chef David Hollister.

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The much-anticipated Tiki Party is 6-9pm Wednesday at The Usual (1408 W Magnolia Av, 817-810-0114), with live music, bites, and libations from Diplomatico Rum, Rumhaven, and more. Put on your best Hawaiian shirt for the costume contest, too.

FW Blackhouse (1105 Peach St, 817-584-8180) will be the site of the Margarita Party, 6-9pm Thursday. Along with live music from Squeezebox Bandits and delicious noshes, there’ll be drinks created by members of the Fort Worth chapter of the nonprofit United States Bartenders Guild (USBG).

And from 6 to 9pm on Friday at The Post (2925 Race St, 817-945-8890), it’s Vodka vs. Gin, the Battle of the Clear. Tito’s, Blackland, and more will be represented, and in addition to a talk by Dave Smith, head distiller for San Francisco’s St. George Spirits, there’ll be live music by Mark Lettieri and Adrian Hulett on two stages.

Tickets to each event is $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Proceeds will go toward the USBG.

Fort Worth’s craft cocktail scene is thriving and growing. Through Cocktail Week, fans have been able to enjoy the handiwork of some of the city’s best mixologists, new trends in craft cocktail culture, live music, and awesome liquor brands – that are often paired with highly complementary chef-driven culinary delights. The participating venues will be responsible for creating their own craft cocktail menus, emphasizing fresh ingredients, new techniques, and inventive flavor combinations. The drinks will be sold at a discount but only during Cocktail Week.

The aim of Cocktail Week is to generate the kind of interest in craft cocktails that is normally paid to craft beer, fine wine, and food. It’s just time for Fort Worth to pay respect to the amazing drinks and world-class bartenders in our own backyard.

For tickets and more, visit FWCocktailWeek.com.

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