We don’t know if there are any songs written about when a bar opens for the night, but there are plenty of them dedicated to the moment before it closes. "Last call" isn’t just a public service announcement, it isn’t just a call to action - buy another drink or get outta here - it’s a ritual, it’s an intimacy, it’s the moment the night changes. Writer Brad Thomas Parsons staked out at dozens of bars across the country to write his new book, Last Call: Bartenders on Their Final Drink and the Wisdom and Rituals of Closing Time. He spoke with Francis Lam about what he saw after so many late nights.

Brad Thomas Parsons is the author of Last Call. Photo: Ed Anderson
Francis Lam
Francis Lam is the host of The Splendid Table. He is the former Eat columnist for The New York Times Magazine and is Editor-at-Large at Clarkson Potter. He graduated first in his class at the Culinary Institute of America and has written for numerous publications. Lam lives with his family in New York City.