Bartender Jackson Cannon, Eastern Standard, The Hawthorne, Island Creek Oyster Bar, Boston, MA, Massachusetts, Boston Area, Cambridge, Where to drink, Where to eat, Where to shop, Bartender’s Recs, Best Bars in Boston, Insider’s Recs, Where Bartenders Drink, Cocktails, Beer, Liquor Stores, Cocktail Bars, Dive Bars, Industry


Eastern Standard, The Hawthorne, Island Creek Oyster Bar - Boston, MA


Q. Tell us about each of the spots you manage, Eastern Standard, Island Creek Oyster Bar, and The Hawthorne, which you own.

A. At Eastern Standard, we approach the cocktail from a brasserie perspective, meaning we always have a little something for everyone - morning, noon and night. It’s a vast menu with all the different cocktail traditions represented.

Island Creek Oyster Bar was the chance for me to kind of do a specifically attenuated more aperitif-driven menu. It caters really well to wine. We’re excited to get people into cool wines and cocktails made with wine.

The Hawthorne is craft cocktails and fine wines with a residential motif. There are various zones around the main bar and a back room that feels like a rich friend’s living room. Cocktail-wise there are two focuses. One is a reverence to the modern Gotham cocktails, especially the ones that relate to the first golden age of Jerry Thomas in the 19th century. That means the cocktails similar to those out of Milk & Honey, Death & Company, Pegu Club and PDT. Cocktails architected simply with three or four ingredients and perfectly balanced, kind of swanky drinks that are modern, but timeless. The second focus is the affection for the cocktail of New Orleans. We have a Vieux Carre, a Ramos Gin Fizz and we do a lot of Sazeracs, even though it’s not on the menu.

Q. When someone orders a Ramos Gin Fizz is that a good thing for you?

A. It’s awesome, we love to make drinks like that. That’s why we’re here and we are especially proud of the way that we do it. We have a shout out to our friend Don Lee who came up with a modern method for making the Ramos Gin Fizz. He used science to prove that that you can do it right without taking 20 minutes.

Bartender’s Tips

Method | How To Make A Ramos Gin Fizz

Put all of the ingredients (gin, egg white, lemon juice, lime juice, Orange Blossom Water, simple syrup) in a shaker and dry shake them to get them to bond together and multiply the egg white. Then add the heavy cream and a single ice rock about the size of your fist. This enables you to not dilute the drink too much and really pummel the cream into the egg white booze mixture when you are shaking it. Then when you add the soda water and stir, it blooms into a meringue a couple of inches out of the glass. That’s when you know you’ve done it right. We garnish that with a little piece of orange.

Video | Watch New Orleans bartender Chris McMillian create a Ramos Gin Fizz using the Don Lee method.


Photographs courtesy of Jackson Cannon | Photo Credit for Jackson Cannon image: Melissa Ostrow


Eastern Standard

528 Commonwealth Avenue

Boston, MA 02215

T: 617.532.9100 (make a reservation)


The Hawthorne

500A Commonwealth Avenue

Boston, MA 02215

T: 617.532.9150


Island Creek Oyster Bar

500 Commonwealth Avenue

Boston, MA  02215

T: 617.532.5300 (make a reservation)







Recommended By

- Bitters Makers: Bittermens Bitters

- Bartender Brother Cleve of First Printer

- Chef Ming Tsai of Blue Ginger


Bartender’s Ingredients


What’s cool about Genever is that you get a really interesting marriage of two of the greatest mixing spirits in the ancient lexicon. You have whiskey undertones with gin overtones. There’s the maltiness of whiskey from the malted barley and the vegetal flavors of American whiskey from the corn in the distillate. Then there’s a step where they take that malt wine and it’s infused with gin botanicals. They bring so much flavor to a party that you can really do a lot of interesting things.

In the first time of storied history of the Bol’s family, I was allowed to pick my own barrel-aged Genever to be bottled and shipped back to the US. It was aged in a French barre, which is larger than a whisky barrel, so a lot of Genever is on its way to us. It was a real treat to go to Amsterdam and select the barrel.

Genever Cocktail | The Dutch Oven

We have a house cocktail on the menu using Bols Genever called the Dutch Oven, which is goofy name. It’s a lightly textured and very aromatic cocktail created by Katy Emerson. It’s basically a muddle of a sugar cube with a little soda water, dashes of aromatic bitters and Absinthe with barrel-aged Genever added and then given a good stir. Pour that over a single ice ball (so it melts slowly) and garnish it with a little grapefruit oil on top. It’s really modern looking, but made in a very traditional Old Fashioned approach.

Pierre Ferrand’s Dry Curacao

When Pierre Ferrand come out with their Dry Curacao, I had a suspicion that it would blend really well with rum and vermouth. The El Presidente cocktail is one that I’ve been a fan of for a long time. When you make that drink with Brugal rum, Dolin vermouth and Dry Curacao, they just sing together.


The Plantation Barbados 5 year Rum is the absolute greatest ounce per ounce value for quality I’ve ever seen. At under $20 for 750ml, it just can’t last.

King’s Ginger Liqueur

It’s origin is an apothecary elixir created by Berry Bros. & Rudd in the early 1900’s for King Edward VII. It’s a ginger liqueur at full 80 proof with some herbal components.  I’m using it as a base in a few different things, like some flips and other presentations with soda and bitters. It’s a really versatile, fun distillate. With the herbs, spices and ginger, it’s more of a fall and winter flavor.

Bartender’s 6 Things... Boston ARea

Find | Bartending Tools

The Boston Shaker

Photograph courtesy of The Boston Shaker

The Boston Shaker

In Summerville, it’s really our only bar store. Adam Lantheaume was just a guest at the bar of the old B-Side Lounge back in the nascent days of the cocktail scene and he noticed the conversation about how we couldn’t get this liquor or that one and he saw a niche there. He has all the books and all the equipment and maybe 40 different kinds of aromatic bitters, because the market has just exploded with those. If I'm struggling to find something, he'll source it and stock it. Everything from muddlers to metal spoon straws to aromatic bitters to spray bottles, everything you could ever want. He’s kind of created this little hub of activity around making sure we have this stuff in Boston.

69 Holland Street, Somerville, MA 02144

T: 617.718.2999

Find | Liquor & Wine

Julio’s Liquor

Photograph courtesy of Julio’s Liquor


Great wine shop and they stock cool liquor. They do barrel selections, so they have their own bottle barrels of Buffalo Trace. You can get help finding whatever you need here.

105 Broad Street, Boston, MA 02110

T: 617.542.2749

Julio’s Liquors

The single best store in New England. It’s a little bit of a drive, because it’s in the suburbs. He’s just taken things to an entirely different level. He throws these whiskey weekends and they move maybe $80,000 to $100,000 worth of product in a day. They also have their own association called Lock & Key where they do massive amounts of barrel selections. I don’t know of any other place in the world that does what they do with tastings several nights of the week. They are really well organized and great guys.

140 Turnpike Road, Westborough, MA 01581

T: 508.366.1942

Cocktails at Drink

Photograph courtesy of Drink

Drink | Cocktails

Brick & Mortar

It's in Central Square. Patrick Sullivan, who used to own the B-Side, owns it and Misty Kalkofen, whose reputation is stellar nationally and internationally, is running the bar for him here. So Brick and Mortar is a definite place to go for drinks.

569 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139

T: 617.491.5599


No conversation about this town’s cocktail scene is complete without mentioning Drink at Fort Point. John Gertsen runs it and it’s an austere grotto-like subterranean space that just has the most convivial and generous attitude towards educating people about drinks. I just love this place. This is the kind of bar you could scatter my ashes out, I will rest in peace.

348 Congress Street, Boston, MA 02210

T: 617.695.1806

Silvertone Bar & Grill

It’s a perennial; it’s like you just can't do without it. It's where the Boston restaurant people go after work.

69 Bromfield Street, Boston, MA 02108

T: 617.338.7887

F.E.D. Recs on the Go

Download the F.E.D. iPhone app and get more of Jackson Cannon’s Boston recommendations as well as more recs from other bartenders, chefs, sommeliers and food artisans.


Recommended By

- Bitters Makers: Bittermens Bitters

- Bartender Brother Cleve of First Printer in Boston, MA

- Chef Ming Tsai of Blue Ginger in Wellesley, MA