It seems a weird time to celebrate anything, but National Cocktail Day is coming on March 24.
Due to the coronavirus epidemic and social distancing mandates, many spots on this list are temporarily closed. Some bars and restaurants around the country are available for takeout and delivery (visit them online or call to find out), making it a great time to support a small business.
For spots not offering cocktail takeout and delivery, this is a perfect excuse to dust off your home bar and get a little creative if you happen to have the right ingredients on hand. Like with any dish, don’t be afraid to improvise a bit and switch up ingredients, replacing with what you have on hand, and have fun!
There’s no denying a lot of us could really use a drink right now…
Up In Smoke
At CATCH STEAK in New York City, this cocktail is a spin on a Greenpoint, which spawned from a classic Manhattan. The Greenpoint was created in 2006 by a bartender who was working at Milk & Honey at the time. Avua Amburana and mole bitters go perfectly with the flavor and aroma that the smoke brings to the cocktail. “This rye forward cocktail is perfect for anyone who loves smoked cocktails and a good Manhattan,” said Lucas Robinson, beverage director of Catch Hospitality Group.
At zuma Las Vegas, the contemporary izakaya-influenced restaurant created a cocktail menu that is inspired by the popular Japanese board game Tokaido. Visitors who are indecisive about a libation ‘roll the dice’ to find symbols that will match zuma’s newest cocktails like the Hanamaki Fizz with mezcal, lychee puree, yuzu cordial, ginger juice, white ale, and chilled with an illuminated LED light inside a hand cut ice block. “The Hanamaki Fizz has become a hit at zuma. We are always looking for new and innovative ways to interact with our guests that are memorable. This experience includes rolling the dice and letting faith decide what cocktail experience you will discover and it was made for a fun and perfect fit for Vegas,’ said James Shearer, global beverage director at zuma.
The Green Fairy
At Sushi Roku Las Vegas and Scottsdale, this cocktail is made with bourbon, Absinthe, rhubarb, lime and mint and CBD oil by CBDfx. “Our CBD cocktail “The Green Fairy” caters to the holistic needs of our customers. CBD oil is known for a variety of therapeutic benefits including a subtle, relaxing effect on the body, similar to meditating. This cocktail is cooling and herbaceous, and the mint really balances out the absinthe perfectly. The CBDFx oil does not contain THC or have psychoactive effects. It’s simply a refreshing drink to calm the mood!” says bartender Maho Sugiyama for Sushi Roku.
At The Sicilian Butcher in Phoenix, this one-of-a-kind, sultry cocktail is presented in a smoking, pipe-like glass that’s as unique as its combination of sweet and smoky flavors. This smoke show is crafted with scotch whiskey, tobacco-infused chocolate bitters and sweet passion fruit puree then finished with a smoke-flavored bubble. “This is a sweet and rich-tasting cocktail that’s still fun and masculine with its smoky flavor and presentation. We incorporated three distinct flavors — chocolate, tobacco and passion fruit to create something completely different than any of our other cocktails,” said The Maggiore co-founder and executive chef Joey Maggiore.
At Mister French in New York City, the Candelaria is a refreshing and tropical cocktail lit for presentation, which is sure to spark up some conversation. The drink, composed of Tito’s vodka, D’Usse Cognac, Gosling’s Black Seal Rum, St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram, Giffard’s Banane du Brésil, fresh pineapple juice, fresh pressed lime juice, and house-made almond orgeat reduction is served tall over crushed ice and topped with a lime bowl with Goslings 151, lit for presentation. “Here at Mister French, we strive to give our guests the best the city has to offer in terms of flavors and entertainment. The Candelaria is the perfect mix of both – with the freshest ingredients, top-notch and well-crafted liquor, and the excitement of a flaming lime to top it all off,” said Steve Mazzuca.
Available at Valerie in New York City, the Harmony cocktail is made with Listoke 1777 Irish Gin, Fee Brothers Rhubarb Bitters, blood orange tincture and Fever Tree Aromatic Tonic. “For our Signature Gin & Tonic portion of the menu we like to use one word descriptors as the name to catch the eye and the taste buds of the imbiber. Harmony for example is used to describe the various herbal, bitter, floral, tangy notes that we combine to create a harmonious gin & tonic combination,” said Marshall Minaya, beverage director .
At Mister Paradise in New York City, a riff on the classic Old Fashioned, the Cafe Disco is a cocktail cooked sous vide, made with old overholt rye whiskey, coffee, buckwheat, olive oil, pernod absinthe. The cocktail is batched following this recipe and cooked sous vide at 150F for 1 hour, then bottled and kept in the freezer for service. To serve, pour 1/8 oz of Pernod Absinthe into a chilled rocks glass, then place 1 large ice cube over it. Slowly pour 4 oz of the cooked cocktail from the freezer over the ice and let it louche the absinthe at the base. Garnish with a grapefruit zest (discarded). “When making the Cafe Disco, I wanted to make a drink that could have a complex, creative recipe, but that our bartenders would be able to make in a flash, since we are quite high volume. I build and cook an entire cocktail ahead of time then bottle it and keep it in a freezer behind the bar. The bartenders just grab the bottle, pour it into an absinthe rinsed glass and garnish with a grapefruit twist.” Will Wyatt, Owner and Beverage Director of Mister Paradise. “Growing up, one of the two breakfasts my mother would cook was buckwheat pancakes with grated citrus. I wanted to take that nostalgic flavor and update it with what I eat for breakfast nowadays (coffee and eggs cooked in olive oil.)” said Will Wyatt.
Created by Gabrela Lopez at Azabache Bar in Puerto Rico, this cocktail is made with Woodford Reserve Bourbon, Carpano Antica Formula , Punt E Mes, Boston Bittah, Chambord and a few drops of saline solution. Downtown Santurce was named after its origin in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Like the cocktail itself, the area surrounding Santurce pulls inspiration from art, which is evident in the masterful technique behind this cocktail’s creation.
The Mia Margarita
Available at Nobu Newport Beach in Newport Beach, this cocktail is made with Corralejo Anejo, passion fruit puree, fresh lime juice, house made honey syrup, shichimi (Japanese 7 spice), and garnished with blood orange wheel and shichimi.
New York Summer Sour
With spring quickly approaching and summer right around the corner, the New York Summer Sour, served at Gramercy Tavern, is the perfect drink to cool down in the warming temperatures. Topped with egg whites, Gramercy Tavern’s New York Summer Sour is the cocktail of choice this season.
Tui Tekaaho, beverage director at Peachy’s in New York City, makes this cocktail with Starward Australian Whisky, Fino Sherry, Demerara Sugar, and Pimento Bitters. A traditional Australian drink, the Fitzroy is great for celebrating National Cocktail Day as it is named for a suburb in Melbourne and pulls from global inspiration.