It's impossible these days to open a serious eatery without a serious cocktail program, but rarely do the drinks at a restaurant so closely match the kinks and ambitions of the kitchen as at ink. Bartenders Gabriella Mlynarczyk and Brittini Rae Peterson keep pace with chef Michael Voltaggio's penchant for highly conceptual, designer food with a list of highly conceptual, designer drinks. Cocktails at ink. often incorporate elements that tie them to the menu — not specifically but in spirit (so to speak). A recent addition, the Cold Brew, puts together coffee, coconut milk, orgeat, Jamaican rum and tequila for a drink that isn't quite dessertlike but could be dessert's badass, sexy older sister. Japanese single-malt whisky is paired with ginger, yuzu, honey and peat for a smoky, weird drink that speaks the same language as the combinations of ingredients you find on ink.'s food menu. It's one thing to have a great cocktail program — it's another entirely to match it to the ambitions of a chef. ink.'s bartenders do both. 8360 Melrose Ave., Hlywd. (323) 651-5866,
—Besha Rodell

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