Shaken, stirred, fried, or simply puréed to a pulp, vegetables are cropping up in cocktails across our fair city. Forget measly sprigs that are little more than window dressings — the new drinks put stalks, tubers, and other surprising ingredients at center stage, no matter that vegetables are less predictable and more high-maintenance than almost any other ingredient that might go into a highball. The appeal: bright hues, bold flavors, bursts of refreshment without sno-cone sweetness, and bragging rights among bartenders and mixologists. The challenges: shorter growing seasons, broader ranges in flavor, a steep learning curve, and little room for error. Besides, even the most open-minded barfly might think twice before downing anything that’s spiked with celery syrup. Check out our slideshow for a few boozy veggie tales worth telling.