If you follow Boston cocktails at all on Instagram, chances are you’ve come across Claudiane Philippe aka Nail the Cocktail. Her photos have a very specific look: freshly manicured nails strategically holding a delicious-looking libation. Nails and cocktails aren’t necessarily an inherent pairing, but the unlikely combo is really what makes her pictures pop, and clearly she’s doing something right — her account has nearly 20,000 followers. Here, she talks trendy cocktail ingredients (like pasta water and root vegetables!), shares her must-follow mixologists and gives the inside scoop on which restaurants have the best Bloody Mary bar and mimosa flights.
Tell us a little about yourself. How’d you end up in Boston, and what inspired you to create your Instagram account?
My names’s Claudiane and I work as a healthcare data consultant who also happens to be really passionate about cocktail blogging. I’ve lived in Massachusetts my entire life so Boston is my home base. In 2017, I remember wanting to find a cocktail blogger who would show me where some of the city’s best drinks were and there were very few (and even fewer who catered to my varied palate for drinks). So I decided I would solve my own problem and hopefully others’.
Name the top five cocktails on your Boston bucket list.
This is such a hard question. However, in no particular order:
1. The Fizz @ Lion’s Tail
2. Nobel Fizz @ Blue Dalia (Natick)
3. Espresso Martini @ Assagio
4. Pisco Punch @ Rail Stop
5. Paparazzi @ The Ghost Walks
What do you think the next big trend is for restaurants?
When it comes to drinks, a lot of restaurants are playing with savory ingredients and not limiting themselves to the typical sweet, sour, or bitter cocktails. I’ve seen cocktails made with pasta water, root vegetables, and even Sriracha!
Which bartenders/mixologists are your favorite to follow on Instagram and why?
Cody Goldstein – @muddlingmemories his creativity and ability to create drinks that get you excited are amazing.
Jarek Mountain – @jarek.mountain from Lion’s Tail is a powerhouse. How he’s able to create a cocktail menu of 30+ INCREDIBLE drinks is beyond me. Lion’s Tail will always be on my top three must-visit bars in Boston.
Beyond bartenders/mixologists, what are your top three favorite Instagram accounts to follow?
Describe Boston’s beverage scene in three words.
Innovative, welcoming, and passionate.
Which restaurants haven’t you been to but you’re eager to try?
I really want to try Better Sorts Social Club, ArtScience Culture Lab & Café, and The Baldwin Bar. I follow those places on Instagram and have no excuse as to why I haven’t gone yet to experience their drinks and food.
What’s your photography philosophy, and can you share your top tips for taking awesome photos?
Take pictures that you think look good. Don’t try to mimic other people’s style solely if you think that’s what everyone wants to see. Also, I think everyone needs to educate themselves on lighting. There is so much that goes into “finding good lighting”. You need to be aware of the temperature of the light, how diffused it is, where the light source is hitting your subject and the concept of white balance.
A Few Of Your Favorite Things:
Favorite brunch spot: Casa Caña
Favorite new restaurant: Alcove Boston
Favorite place for post-work drinks: Lion’s Tail
Favorite joint for tiki cocktails: Blue Dragon
Favorite mimosa flights: SKYBOKX in Natick
Favorite Bloody Mary bar: Loretta’s Last Call