what: Blood Bag
where: Bone-In Barbeque, 2180 Boyce St.
more: 803-728-7512, boneinbarbeque.com
Bone-In Barbeque chef and owner Scott Hall loves Halloween. Anyone who attended one of his X Marks The Spot pop-up dinners, some held out in the woods under suspended candlelight where you had to walk past a shirtless man wearing a buffalo mask in order to get to the cocktail hour, can attest that he does the holiday right. So it’s no surprise that during Bone-In Barbeque’s first October, he has gone all out, decorating the place in any and everything spooky, and throwing a free Bash at the Boneyard on Halloween night (8 p.m.-midnight) with live music, special performances, drink specials, complimentary food, a costume contest and more.
And that goes for the always killer cocktail menu as well. Ever wanted to pretend you’re a vampire, but you know, without all the killing and actually drinking blood? Well, look no further than the Blood Bag. Served in an actual blood bag over ice, this is the campy cocktail to get you in the spirit for Halloween. This terrifying take on a Manhattan comes from new Bone-In bar manager Jason Davis, formerly of Tallulah and Motor Supply Co. Ditching the sweet vermouth for some red wine, this drink is perfectly set off by the inclusion of Cardamaro, an amaro infused with cardoon and blessed thistle, which sound appropriately like ingredients for a witches potion. It lends a smooth quality to the usually more bitter drink, making it great for sucking up through a plastic tube like you’re David Boreanaz circa 1997 — or someone from The Vampire Diaries if you prefer sexy good-guy vampires from this century.