By Alison Bailin Batz
Venues across the Valley are taking many of men’s most beloved classic cocktails – think a Manhattan, an Old-Fashioned or a martini – and giving them a twist for today. This month, treat your man to one of these creative concoctions.
Lady in Red, $12
This specialty martini is made with Palos Alto Blanco Tequila, Ancho Reyes Chile Liqueur, lime juice and grenadine. Just like its namesake – a lady in red – it’s extremely hot and spicy in the best way possible. Info: JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn, 5402 E. Lincoln Drive, Scottsdale; 480.905.7979; www.camelbackinn.com.
3 Bitter Manhattan, $12
A slight twist, but one that makes all the difference in flavor, this Manhattan is made with traditional ingredients, save for the bar’s housemade Dropout Bitter Trio, a sweet and strong bitters. Info: 7135 E. Camelback Road, Scottsdale; 480.970.1709; www.culinarydropout.com.
44 Manhattan, $18
This combination is one of sophistication, featuring Knob Creek Single Barrel whiskey, Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur, Licor 43, sweet vermouth and Angostura bitters. Stirred in a martini shaker with ice, the concoction is then served on the rocks with a Luxardo cherry garnish. Info: 15169 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale; 480.272.7271; www.dominickssteakhouse.com.
The Grampy Smith, $12
A smoky take on an already serious cocktail, the Grampy Smith is an Old-Fashioned, but it uses Crown Royal’s hugely popular Regal Apple Whisky, house-smoked maple syrup and cherry bitters. Info: CopperWynd Resort, 13225 N. Eagle Ridge Drive, Fountain Hills; 480.333.1880; www.flourishaz.com.
Crimson Rye, $13
This tasty twist features George Dickel Rye Whisky, a Tennessee variation finished in a chilled charcoal-mellowed style, which creates an ultra-smooth finish. This is stirred with Langleys Gin, Lillet Rose, lemon and molasses bitters, then strained into a coupe glass. A star anise pod crowns the cocktail. Info: 5455 E. High St., Phoenix; 480.347.1313; www.ocean-prime.com.
Rusconi’s American Kitchen
The Alamo, $10
You’ll have no trouble remembering this Alamo, a drier take on the Manhattan with Garrison Brothers Whiskey, port wine, dry vermouth and orange bitters. Surprisingly, the port wine doesn’t overpower or oversweeten the drink one bit – a welcome, clever addition. Info: 10637 N. Tatum Blvd., Phoenix; 480.483.0009; www.rusconiskitchen.com.
Torch Cigar Bar
Smoked Manhattan, $10
Easily one of the coolest takes on a Manhattan, expect a bourbon-soaked oak flavor and lots of smokiness. And we mean that literally – the glass is smoked to bring out the nose and flavors, not to mention give guests a show. Info: 5450 E. High St., Phoenix; 480.939.2668; www.torchcigarbar.com.
Z’Tejas Southwestern Grill
That’ll Leave a Mark, $10
Think of this cocktail as a whisky sour with Spanish flair. Made with Maker’s Mark Bourbon and Licor 43 – a Spanish liquor made with 43 herbs and spices– and a touch of lemon juice and peach puree, this cocktail has a generous depth of flavor, and, as the name promises, will be hard to forget. Info: 7014 E. Camelback Road, Scottsdale; 480.946.4171; www.ztejas.com.