A good first-date-first-impression is almost as essential as a strong first-date-cocktail. Maybe you're tired of being the bad boy, and you really want to wow this girl with some newfound, genuine charm. Or, maybe you're sick of being given the girl-next-door treatment, and you're more interested in seeming every bit the sexy-siren this evening.
Either way, tons of consideration goes into the type of vibe you're trying to send. Once your outfit is picked, your meeting place secured, and your transportation arranged, it's time to move on to the promise land, otherwise known as the bar. So, what do you order? We decided to leave this one up to the professionals and get some firsthand advice from a couple of bartenders who have seen it all.
Read on to see what your first-date-drink says about you!
According to Nick, a bartender at first-date hotspot Urban Table in Morristown, N.J., ordering a glass of red screams seduction.
"There's this one guy who comes in here, I'd say once a month, every time with a new woman. He always drinks red wine, and always sways her to drink red wine,"says Nick, 24, who's been working in the restaurant business for six years. He's definitely picked up a thing or two from smooth patrons like this one. "Now if I really want to get a girl in the mood, it's going to be with red wine."
However, seasoned bartender John, 30, cautions first-daters who order red wine at his more low-key bar at a popular chain restaurant. "I've been doing this long enough to make some broad generalizations," he says, "And I've never seen anyone pull the swirl-and-sniff at this place. That's just some pretentious bullsh*t."
Both bartenders were in agreement that white wine is the more feminine pour of the two. "Women tend to be the white wine drinkers in here, and honestly it has a lot more to do with the selection of the wine than the fact that she's ordering it," says Nick.
John agrees that ordering a glass of white wine isn't as significant as the type of white wine that you ask for.
What's the biggest mistake that patrons make when requesting their vino of choice? Ordering a glass of the house blend. "People who order house wine are being frugal," says John. "It will cost you $40 to drink a bottle of house wine, and that bottle that you're buying at $10 per glass will cost the restaurant $13 to replace, so you might as well go with something nice."
While martinis definitely elude urban sophistication on the big screen, our bartenders' observations say otherwise. "Anybody that orders a martini looks like an alcoholic," says John. "I'm sorry, but that's just straight alcohol."
Even if martinis are your favorite, you might want to save this potent cocktail for date number two.
Just as red wine screams seduction, and house wine screams cheap, fruity drinks like this one scream, "I just discovered my parents' liquor cabinet."
"Girls that order Malibu Bay Breezes are idiots," says John. Jeez, a little harsh? Absolutely, but he is onto something. "Seriously, it's like 'ooh, a fruity drink!' but then really, it's all sugary juice, hardly any alcohol, and a surefire hangover."
According to Nick, ordering a Manhattan signifies that you want to get drunk, and you want to get drunk quickly.
One thing is for sure: guys love a girl who can enjoy a cold beer. "Personally, I think it's awesome when a girl orders a beer, especially when they want to hear the specials," says Nick. "It shows that you’re not limited to just one type of drink, and I think it's more attractive when someone is into being surprised by switching it up with a different type of
"But then there's also Craft-Beer-Guy," says John. "He wants to hear every single weird beer that we serve, and then tries to act like a snob talking about the hint of lemon-zest this one has, or how hoppy that one is." Not every restaurant is a brewery, and he ranks Craft-Beer-Guy one step below the Red Wine Swirl-and-Sniffer.
Anything On The Rocks
Both bartenders agreed that it’s only okay to order hard alcohol on the rocks if you have the personality and look to back it up. "You do have those guys that order vodka on the rocks, and I honestly don't know how they do it, but it clearly takes the edge off of their first date jitters," says Nick.
While John agrees that it's better to start with hard alcohol if you're planning to transition to beer or wine with dinner, you also have to be aware that ordering something on the rocks could make you seem a bit ridiculous. "Sometimes you'll get a 25-year-old douche that orders a Bourbon on the rocks to make himself look sophisticated," John says, who advises first-datees to leave this drink to the cast of Mad Men, and order something else.
So, What Is The Perfect First-Date Drink?
"A good drink to order on a first date would be a Stoli Rasberry and club with a splash of cranberry juice. That way, you get a little bit of flavor, and it still looks like a nice drink with the hint of Pink from the cranberry," says John. "You aren't ordering house vodka, but you also aren't ordering something ridiculous like Grey Goose either."
Nick, however, doesn't think that your drink order actually matters on a first date. "Don't be scared of ordering the drink you want," he says. "The best first dates I've observed involve people who aren't afraid to act true to themselves, even if some people might not like it. On a first date, you shouldn't be afraid to show who you are."
Get even more insights about the delicious ways in which food influences our relationships with each other and ourselves by checking out all of our Breakfast, Love & Dinner stories here!
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