There's something to be said for letting things evolve naturally, except in the case of man, who was invented by God on a dare. Finally in a place of its own (intelligent) design, The Boston Shaker, opening tomorrow.
After a year comfortably nestled within Grand, this brainchild of a drink aficionado (started by tracking down random bitters for his buddies) has finally gone solo, stocking a full repertoire of cocktail tools, implements, glassware, and ingredients in its own digs decorated with help from Chroma Lab folks to include dark hardwood floors, scattered decorative vintage cameras, a three-seat butcher block bar for in-store classes/tastings, and a ledger board wood plank ceiling for Lionel Richie when he's dressed as a pirate. To augment your bar game, there's a healthy selection of cocktail shakers (OXO Stainless Steel Cobbler, Parisian Style 2 Piece), strainers (4-Prong Hawthorne), and instruments like PUG!'s handmade Jatoba wood muddler; they've also got stainless steel shelves full of drinkware (Collins, old fashioned rocks, Dutch cordial glasses) as well as ice crushers and soda water machines, who've risen up to destroy John Connor through bloating and gassy discomfort. So you'll know what to put in those shiny glasses, there's a three-shelf reference library of recipes, a range of bitters (Fee Brothers Rhubarb, Regans' Orange, etc), syrups (Scrappy's Lavender and Tait Farm Ginger Shrub), and garnishes like wild Hibiscus flower and Luxardo Gourmand Marasca Cherries, which they're happy for you to buy, even if the next day they're overcome with regret.
With more room to operate, TBS plans to rev up the tastings and spontaneous, no-fee in-store demos (how to stir cocktails, etc), as well as extend an already insightful lineup of courses to include topics like punches, homemade ingredients, and getting recent college grads to drink something other than vodka and Red Bull -- although any chance of that evolution is strictly mythical.