Photos by Eric Marks
So, you filed your taxes—sounds like time to celebrate.
And what better way to toast cheers to the end of tax season than with a cocktail at the appropriately named Death & Taxes?
The sophisticated speakeasy is a Midtown staple, one that has been there since the early days of gentrification. And when you step in, you are transported to the 1920s with the décor and cocktail list.
We want to be clear that Death & Taxes is a speakeasy in style but not in the sense that you need a secret code or a map to enter. Located on Cheney Street, the bar faces the street and it’s easy to enter up the front steps.
Once you’re inside, however, you’ll feel like you’re somewhere new—or old. We warn it can get crowded on the right night but if you’re lucky, you’ll be able to grab a big leather couch next to a fireplace for your crew to sip in style. Bar seats are a good second choice and better than the standing room only you may encounter on a weekend.
Wine and beer is on the menu, but it’s the craft cocktails that make Death & Taxes what it is. I especially appreciate how the menu is set up, organized by type of liquor.
So, if you know you’re a gin drinker, simply flip to that page (it’s a big menu) and weigh your options between the Final Say—made with gunpowder Irish gin, green chartreuse, iron wort, blanco vermouth and wine—and the Friday’s Child—featuring Hendrick’s gin added to aloe, mint, white port, clarified pineapple and finished with lime.
There are several others ranging from the always-popular gin and tonic to floral and citrus concoctions.
This same process can be repeated for whiskey, rum, vodka and agave.
There is also a list of suggested cocktails that represent some establishment favorites and a “baller” list for those that want to feel fancy, and maybe drop a few extra dollars.
The Good As Gold features 24K gold vermouth and is the most affordable extra on the menu, ringing up at $15. The list maxes out at $95 with the luxurious Tuxedo Reserva, concocted with a 30-year-old sherry.
The central location is a positive for those looking for a night on the town. While the drinks here are one-of-a-kind, there is no food in sight, which means you may be snacking on late-night pizza or enjoying a pre-drinks dinner of Korean fusion food at Arario Midtown.