What you’re drinking: Manhattans are usually mixed at the bar, but the Broadway’s new version mixes Bulleit Rye and Carpano Antica Formula (a high-end Italian vermouth) and ages them together in an oak barrel for 100 days. How new is the drink? On a recent Tuesday afternoon, general manager Dave Jenks was just starting to decant the 10 liters of Manhattans into bottles. Front-of-house manager and bartender Brian Edmands fixed up a glass for me, afterward remarking, “I haven’t even tasted it yet!” After a long sip he nodded knowingly. “It’s delicious.”

How to drink it: For James Bond, drinks are always shaken, but unnecessary roughness disrupts the smooth flavor of this Manhattan. Three ounces are poured into a glass of ice and stirred for two suspenseful minutes. Edmands says you can have it neat, but he recommends it with a single large ice cube, aka, “on the rock,” topped with a Bordeaux cherry.

Barrel-aged Manhattans at the Broadway

What it tastes like: It has a rich, earthy oak flavor that plays off the vermouth’s vanilla notes. It’s smooth and mellow, and the simple presentation makes it seem pretty classy.

Where you’re drinking it: The Broadway is a sports bar with dated decor, save for one industrial-chic brick wall. But what’s cool about the bar are Jenks and Edmands (and some friendly regulars) who, along with a third bartender, Chance Pipal, have a passion for experimentation. Last year, they made a peach-infused Old Fashioned (it went fast) and a Limoncello (still available). “I think the new generation is looking for quality over quantity,” Jenks says. “They eat a lot less processed foods, drink a lot more local beer, eat a lot more local food — they care where everything comes from. And that’s a good thing.”

Where to find it: 1609 West Broadway. Opens at 4 p.m. daily.

Happiest Hour celebrates western Montana watering holes. To recommend a bar, bartender or beverage for Happiest Hour, email editor@missoulanews.com.

Arts & Entertainment Editor

Missoula native Erika Fredrickson started writing music reviews for the Indy in 2005 and became the arts editor in 2008. She covers the Missoula arts scene, food policy and local characters. @efredmt on Twitter.

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