Hidden History

A little-noticed bar with a cocktail pedigree

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ownstairs from the two cavernous restaurants that bookend the Hotel Commonwealth, the Hawthorne cocktail lounge is easy to miss. But it’s worth finding, before or after. Named for the cocktail strainer created in the late 1800s at a bar in Boston of the same name (so that’s what that thing is called!), the Hawthorne has a long craft cocktail list with names you won’t find anywhere else. Try the Phil Collins (vodka, cucumber, lime, and chartreuse) or the Death in the Afternoon (chartreuse, sugar, absinthe, and bubbles) while you munch on soft pretzels as an appetizer or build a three-course meal from the large selection of small plates. Shelbourne

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The Hawthorne strainer, which is used to remove liquid from ice, is a round, perforated disk with a spring around the edge that adjusts to various glass diameters. The patent for the device was awarded in 1892 to Dennis P. “Denny” Sullivan, who ran the Hawthorne Gentlemen’s Café and Restaurant at 24 Avery St.

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