The crowd at the US Open—which starts today—loves aces, overhead smashes, long rallies and five-setters, but its real favorite (move over John McEnroe) is the Honey Deuce. It’s the tournament’s wildly popular signature cocktail and was created in 2007 by New York mixologist Nick Mautone. It combines Grey Goose Vodka, fresh lemonade and Chambord. Last year alone, 60,000 of them were consumed by thirsty spectators.
But the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center isn’t the only place to get a drink. Its home borough of Queens actually boasts one of the best watering holes in the city: Dutch Kills. Just a few stops away on the 7 train, it offers a large list of delicious and methodically made concoctions.
We asked the establishment’s head bartender, Jan Warren, for two recipes to savor while watching the matches. He suggested the lime-grapefruit-cinnamon-and-rhum-agricole Donga Punch, which is on Dutch Kills’ menu currently. “It’s light, refreshing and has a cheeky name,” he says. Plus, tennis fans can rename it the “Tsonga Punch” after top-10 singles player Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
Or fix Warren’s Long Island City Iced Tea, which calls for gin, Averna, lemon juice and soda water. “When I think late-summer drinking,” he says, “my mind goes straight to gin.” He’s quick to point out that “tennis is a long game,” and this tipple has a lower alcohol content, making it a great sipper you can enjoy all afternoon.
Now back to the action at Flushing Meadows.