It may not come in a yard long plastic cup or taste like a Jolly Rancher that’s been soaking in vodka all night, but whiskey is one drink that boils over with style and class. And we’re not talking about the shots you down before hitting the dance floor. These are the whiskeys you savor, the ones you remember and the ones that sooth your every chill.
Andre’s Cigar Lounge
Many people know Andre’s at the Monte Carlo as a spot for cognac lovers and cigar smokers. The restaurant’s cigar room has world-class selections of cognac, armagnac and cigars. But the second-floor space turns into a whiskey fan’s paradise for Whiskey Wednesday. VIPs, and occasionally Las Vegas industry insiders, get to experience some of the finest whiskeys available. And don’t worry if you’re not a smoker. Andre’s cares so much about its guests’ experiences that they designed a special ventilation and air filtration system to ensure all you smell is the rich aroma of the whiskey. Buy your tickets early as admission is quite limited, but don’t worry too much if you miss the big event. They often have the same whiskeys available for tasting flights in the restaurant throughout the month.
Craftsteak’s alcohol menu is 68 pages long. We’ll give you a moment to compose yourself after reading that. While most of those pages filled with some truly outstanding wine, the last dozen are where you’ll find the impressive list of single malt scotches and fine selections of bourbon, whiskey and more. The bar isn’t secluded like Andre’s cigar lounge, so Craftsteak at MGM Grand isn’t the place to hobnob with whiskey aficionados. It’s the place to plant yourself and prove to everyone around you that you know how to order, and properly pronounce, the Glenmorangie Signet or the Laphroaig 18 year — for those who enjoy Islays. With the impeccable selection and a bar that’s a part of the atmosphere, Craftsteak is the place to show the world your whiskey knowledge.
By now you’ve noticed a little bit of a pattern. The steakhouses tend to do very well when it comes to whiskey. And Delmonico at the Venetian is no exception. But one thing that sets this bar apart is the knowledgeable staff. Max Solano, the beverage manager and mixologist, is such an expert on all things whiskey that he created the famed Delmonico Book of Whisky, arranged many of the flights it contains and has traveled with Delmonico owner Emeril Lagasse (yes, that Emeril Lagasse) to personally research and choose whiskeys, and many other beverages, for Emeril’s restaurants. No matter how much you think you know about whiskey, even if you know the difference between whiskey and whisky, stop by Delmonico. You’ll learn something exciting and delicious.
This one sounds like a given, but it really is something special. At first glance it seems like just another gaming lounge on the casino floor in the MGM Grand. But once you pick up the menu you’ll see that Whiskey Down offers some unique choices that you just can’t find anywhere else. Three of those, including a Jack Daniel’s single barrel, are exclusive to the MGM Grand. And they also serve “The Last Drop,” a rare 1960 single malt of which only 1,347 bottles were ever produced. Also serving classics like the Glenlivet and handcrafted cocktails, Whiskey Down is the place to try something a little different in between sips of the greats.
Here’s where Vegas truly shows her affection for whisky. Just off the Las Vegas Strip lies a restaurant and bar called the Freakin’ Frog. Known throughout the world for its incredibly comprehensive beer selection of over 1,100 brews, and offering some delectably spicy bar food, Freakin’ Frog houses a secret that will leave all whisky fans drooling. Upstairs is the Whisky Attic, one of the greatest collections of whisky in America. Open only for private tastings, and guarded by a mildly ominous suit of armor, the Whisky Attic is so magnificent that you don’t even need to be a whisky lover to appreciate the scope — but it definitely helps.
When you come to Las Vegas, you may feel obligated to try one of the huge souvenir cups full of sugary liquor. But never forget that this city has a sophisticated side too. Sip some of the best whiskey in the world while having a steak or puffing on a cigar, or schedule an off-Strip adventure in the Whisky Attic. For whiskey fans, Las Vegas is like a rare blend with a rich, full finish.