Last night we stopped into NYC's NoMad for a beverage or two, and while we were looking through the list the cocktail waitress made a few suggestions. The drinks were clearly boozy, but at high-end lounges they aren't going to say "if you want to get wasted, drink that one." Instead, they used the code word that we've heard employed at other fancy-schmancy cocktail dens: "that drink is very spirit-forward." A patron at out table wasn't savvy to this code - when a drink was placed in front of her that was essentially a glass of alcohol, she exclaimed "this is so strong!" When we explained that the waitress had let her know about that in the description, she was all "whaaaa????"
Drinkers that are not cocktail geeks should take note - spirit-forward is the equivalent of someone in a less fancy establishment ordering a "Strong Island." Be warned!