The Central Park Cocktail Club did something a little different for April’s meeting: we tended bar. (Well, at least I did. For about five minutes. I made a Sazerac, and the customer seemed pleased enough.)

Untitled cocktail featuring Marie Brizard raspberry, as fashioned by Alex Huebner (background).

Thanks to Girls Rock! Chicago’s fabulous Autumn Auction (full disclosure: it’s an annual event that I plan for a charity on whose board I sit), I won the rights to a crash-course in bartending at Weegee’s Lounge as taught by its fabulous proprietor, Alex “Arthur Fellig” Huebner.

Several rounds in & still drinking in the knowledge. (Get it?)

Under the premise “I could teach a monkey how to bartend,” Alex walked us through the bar’s history (which I learned initially carried one of the oldest liquor licenses in Chicago — amazing!), the bar itself (vintage ice boxes! original Brunswick bar!), his rules of proportionality and how he derives his recipes, and finally, we got a lesson in free-pouring. For the record, I pour a slightly heavy-handed shot. ALSO, and this was the most fascinating lesson ever: Did you know that shaking a shot with ice results in triple the amount of (watered-down) booze? Pretty neat.

Glassware galore!

Thanks, Alex, for all the learnings. Anyone who can get me tipsy enough to pretend to know how to bartend at an establishment for which I have utmost respect is obviously a demigod in my book.