Cocktail Culture


That’s the Spirit!

Photography by Sabin Orr

Photography by Sabin Orr

5 Classic Cocktails – Bartenders are putting their own twists on the season, packing some punch with creative Takes on classic cocktails.
by Grace Bascos

Cocktails are serious business in Las Vegas, especially in the cooler months when it becomes more pleasant to indulge in heartier liquors such as cognac and Campari and flavors such as basil and apple. Here are five cocktails that will certainly shake up your seasonal drinking regimen.

The Dean Martin
Martorano’s, Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino

A proper cocktail should be a kick in the head, and this Martorano’s cocktail pays homage to the very man who made that proclamation (though he was referring to love, of course). The Dean Martin is a refreshing concoction of citrus vodka, simple syrup and soda, brightened with muddled strawberries and fresh basil. Your head may be spinning after a few of these, but you’ll definitely go to bed grinning.

Southside
Gordon Ramsay Steak, Paris Las Vegas

One of the most creative presentations, the Southside is also one of the easiest cocktails to drink. Plymouth Gin and Perrier Jouët are mixed and poured over fresh limes muddled with mint and agave nectar, and served with the julep strainer atop the glass. The resulting beverage is crisp, aromatic, verdant and bubbly. The correct technique is to sip the drink through the strainer: This method was developed before the advent of straws, so those with sensitive teeth would not have to encounter direct contact with ice.

The Negroni
Old Homestead Steakhouse, Caesars Palace

The Negroni has enjoyed a recent resurgence in the modern cocktail lexicon, thanks to mixologists embracing its smooth, yet bitter, qualities. Best served as an apéritif, the classic cocktail is made with gin, herbaceous Campari and sweet vermouth, and served with an orange wedge. It’s a drink that definitely stirs up an appetite, and can stand up to a great steak.

Caramel Apple Martini
Center Cut Steakhouse, Flamingo Las Vegas

On the sweeter side of this cocktail tour, the caramel-apple martini evokes the best of fall flavors. Grey Goose vodka is enhanced with apple Pucker, butterscotch Schnapps, Sierra Mist soda, and garnished with apple and caramel drizzle. The resulting drink is mild and crisp with a mellow, sweet finish at the end.