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Las Vegas Cocktails

Drinks Inspired by Las Vegas


cocktails in vegas

Photo courtesy of Thomas Hawk

Nearly since its founding the City of Las Vegas has been built on the power of the good time. Gambling, drinking, clubbing and eating all mix here in Las Vegas in ways that make other towns jealous. So it is of little wonder that the city in the Valley has spawned a whole series of cocktails.

From sweet and tasty to strong and potent, these libations were born or inspired by Sin City. Sample as many as you like, but remember to always drink responsibly. Where available I've included the name of the mixologist that created the drink. Happy sipping.

Las Vegas

A drink named after the city itself better be tasty and potent and while this drink is definitely sip worthy in comes with a kick that does the town proud.

  • 1 1/2 oz gold tequila
  • 2 oz coconut cream
  • 2 oz oj
  • 2 oz pineapple juice
  • 1 oz whipping cream
  • blend with crushed ice.

Leaving Las Vegas

A citrus variation of the Long Island Tea this drink was inspired by the movie of the same name.

  • 1 0z vodka
  • 1 oz light rum
  • 1 oz gin
  • 1 oz triple sec
  • lemonade
  • 2 tbsp sugar or 1 oz simple syrup
  • splash lemon/lime soda

Russ Vegas Snow Day

This tasty island inspired beverage tastes like a tropical smoothie on roids. Great for sipping poolside.

  • 1/2 oz Cruzan coconut rum
  • 1/2 oz Cruzan pineapple rum
  • 1/2 oz 99 Bananas banana schnapps
  • oj
  • pineapple juice
  • splash grenadine

Ultimate Las Vegas Cocktail Winners

The following drinks are the winners of the Las Vegas Review Journal sponsored contest for the Ultimate Las Vegas Cocktail. Thanks to the LVRJ for the fine work.

Down For the Count

Using Carlos Santana's phenomenal Casa Noble is a great way to start off this cocktail, especially if you plan on taking in his show later that night.

  • 1 oz Casa Noble Anejo Tequila
  • ½ oz Fernet Branca
  • ½ oz fresh lemon juice
  • ½ oz St-Germain elderflower liqueur
  • ½ oz agave nectar
  • 2 dashes of Fee Brothers Aztec Chocolate Bitters

Combine all ingredients in a shaker tin and shake well. Strain into a chilled rocks glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish with mint sprig. (Recipe from J.R. Starkus, Rick Moonen's RM Seafood)

Fear and Loathing

Named after Hunter S. Thompson's iconic book, and my best "novel" about Vegas, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas it is a potent mixture sure to be feared and loved.

  • 1½ ozs St. George Terroir gin
  • ¾ oz Del Maguey Crema de Mescal
  • ½ oz Luxardo maraschino liqueur
  • 1 oz lemon juice
  • ½ oz pineapple puree
  • ½ oz agave nectar
  • 2 drops Bittercube cherry-bark bitters
  • Splash of egg white
  • Lemon wheel and brandied cherry for garnish

Shake in a tin and strain over cubed ice in a sling glass. Garnish. (Recipe from Chris Hopkins of Vesper at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas)

The Real Dill

Amazingly refreshing and theoretically the most fun you'll ever have eating your vegetables, this cool drink is a must make on a hot summer afternoon.

  • 2 slices cucumber
  • Sprig of dill
  • ¾ oz fresh lime juice
  • ¾ oz fresh lemon juice
  • 1 oz agave nectar
  • 2 ozs Ultimat Vodka
  • 3 thin slices of cucumber and 1 dill leaf for garnish

Muddle cucumber and dill with lime and lemon juices in a glass shaker. Add agave nectar and vodka; shake all ingredients and double strain through a fine strainer into a cocktail glass. Garnish. (Recipe from Armando Rosario of Southern Wine and Spirits)

Blooming Vegas

Now the chances that you'll have a home bar stocked with the ingredients to make this cocktail is pretty unlikely, unless you are a true devotee of the mixing arts, but stop by some of Sin City's snazzier establishments and ask and maybe, just maybe you'll recieve.

  • 1 oz Bols Genever
  • ¾ oz Velvet Falernum
  • 1 oz lemon juice
  • 2 dashes rhubarb bitters
  • ¼ oz Creme de Yvette
  • Candied violet flower for garnish

Shake and strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish. (Recipe from Anthony Pullen, Bols Genever Brand Ambassador Nevada)

Adam and Eve

This is a cocktail better prepped in advance and served at a dinner party or get together. Great for those who love to infuse and try new things and it uses a locally produced whiskey to boot.

  • 8 ozs Sin City Whiskey
  • 4 slices blood orange
  • 4 slices Fuji apple
  • Dash of Fee Brothers Orange Bitters
  • Cinnamon sugar
  • Slice of blood orange
  • Slice of Fuji apple
  • Apple peel curl

To infuse whiskey (enough for four drinks), put whiskey in a glass bottle. Add four slices of blood orange and four slices of Fuji apple and allow to infuse for 6 to 7 days.

Pour 2 ozs of infused whiskey in shaker; add ice cubes and bitters and shake well in a shaker tin.
Rim a rocks glass with cinnamon sugar. Pour the mixture, including the ice, in the glass. Garnish with slice of blood orange, slice of apple and apple-peel curl on rim. (Recipe from Catherine Pawelek, Elements Kitchen & Martini Bar)

Poker Face

This cocktail is inspired either by the the WSOP or if you are younger (can I see your ID please) by Lady Gaga. Regardless it is tasty, sweet and will cause you to quickly lose your poker face.

  • 1½ ozs Captain Morgan Parrot Bay Pineapple
  • Pineapple juice
  • Cranberry juice
  • ¾ oz Grand Marnier
  • Fresh pineapple slice and cherry for garnish

Pour rum into a tall glass filled with ice. Fill with pineapple juice and a splash of cranberry juice. Float Grand Marnier on top. Garnish. (Recipe from Danny Asseff of Arizona Charlie's Decatur)

World Famous Mount Charleston Coffee

Sick of warming yourself with a tired old Irish Coffee while you sit fireside atop Mt. Charleston? Well fear not. with this amazing and tasty hot beverage you won't need to pack the Jameson.

  • 1 oz Drambuie
  • 1 oz brandy
  • 1 oz homemade vanilla milk (see note)
  • 8 ozs Kona coffee
  • Whipped cream, cinnamon, nutmeg and cherry for garnish

Mix all ingredients and top with garnish. Note: To make vanilla milk, mix ½ cup sugar, 1 quart whole milk and 1½ teaspoons Tahitian vanilla (or use vanilla beans, opened and scraped). (Recipe from Thomas Schneekloth, Will Green and Coco Logan of Mount Charleston Lodge)

Thanks Again to the LVRJ and all the great mixologists for the great work.

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