While in Vegas this season, you might indulge in an alcoholic beverage with dinner or at a nightclub. But, not just any cocktail will do. Creative infusions, syrups and garnishes have replaced much of the dull vodka cranberry drinks in Vegas. Even lobby bars, center bars and casual-dining restaurants are stepping up their cocktail lists, where simple syrup is infused with ingredients like coconut, Chinese five spice and fig.
“A lot of mixologists today, they’re working with the chefs in the kitchens. They’re trying to build a bridge,” said Peter Brattander, director of beverage at the Mirage.
Brattander’s beverage program has recently introduced 42 new cocktails, using ingredients from the kitchen to spice up the drinks at hotel bars and restaurants.
“It’s about being unique, it’s about being different. You can get a gin and tonic anywhere but in addition to this beautiful hotel, how else can we step it up?” said Brattander.
A special seasonal cocktail offering from the Mirage is just the beginning of my list. Here are some of my favorite seasonal and holiday cocktails in Vegas. It was a hard job, but someone had to taste test for you.
Available: at the Mirage
Description: A smooth, creamy cocktail that includes harvest pumpkin pie liqueur, a rim made from crushed pumpkin seed and nutmeg and a pumpkin cranberry chip.
Mai Crooked Tai
Available: At the Chandelier Bar in the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
Description: If you like apple cider, this one is for you. A blend of apple cider, cinnamon syrup, Appleton Estate rum and garnished with an apple chip and cinnamon stick, this cocktail is the perfect spiked cider.
Available: at Hussong’s Cantina in the Shops at Mandalay Place
Description: A cocktail with a kick, this smooth beverage includes Patron XO Cafe and Godiva Choco.
Available: At LBS Burger Joint in Red Rock Resort
Description: This milkshake is refreshing and made with gingerbread crumbles, vanilla ice cream and spiked with rum. The delightful beverage is the perfect accompaniment to one of LBS’s juicy burgers. LBS also offers a candy cane milkshake and a pumpkin milkshake.
Available: at Petrossian Bar, Baccarat, the Buffet at Bellagio and Café Bellagio
Description: A Champagne flute topped with strawberry caviar, PJ Brut, passion fruit puree and rock candy syrup blend in symphonic harmony to create this fruity beverage.
The Gingerbread Man
Available: Tabú Ultra Lounge
Description: Topped with three gingerbread cookies, this drink comes with a snack. It also is creamy and sweet, with Bailey’s, butterscotch liqueur, cinnamon schnapps, brandy and nutmeg.
Sparkling Cinnamon Apple
Available: at Morton’s The Steakhouse on Flamingo
Description: A fizzy mix of Prosecco, green apple lambic and honey syrup, this beverage is smooth, sweet and the perfect way to celebrate the holidays. The glass rim is dusted with cinnamon sugar and toped with whipped cream.
New York Flip
Available: at Comme Ça in the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
Description: A creamy blend of egg yolk, bourbon, port, heavy cream and nutmeg makes this rich holiday beverage a comfort during the holidays.
Fig-ure of Speech
Available: at the Vanguard Lounge
Description: Sage leaf and maplewood bacon fat infused bourbon–I can probably stop there. However, this cocktail also includes honey-lemon sour and house-made blackberry-fig jam and is topped with a sage leaf.
Under the Mistletoe
Available: at Panevino
Description: Prosecco, pomegranate extract at and pomegranate vodka makes a festive holiday drink.
Available: at Hank’s at Green Valley Ranch Resort
Description: A creamy martini made with Kahlua, Absolut Vanilla, gingerbread liqueur and topped with whipped cream, cinnamon sugar rim and nutmeg.
Available: at PBR Rock Bar
Description: This drink is just like the campfire treat and includes Marshmallow vodka, chocolate syrup and a graham cracker crust rim.