Craft Cocktail: Avocadarita at fig + farro

Margaritas and avocados go hand in hand, especially when the weather turns hot and humid. And at fig + farro, both can literally be in your hand at the same time with their Avocadarita. “Avocados lend an amazing, creamy mouthfeel and an awesome light color,” says Michael Dunn, bartender at fig + farro. “Sweet orange, … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Murakami Tea Punch at Martina

There’s an old rhyme from Barbados that describes the ratio of ingredients in a bowl of punch: “One of sour, two of sweet, three of strong, and four of weak.” When Dustin Nguyen won the punch-making competition for Martina at this year’s Minneapolis regional of Cochon555, his creation followed those proportions. But it wasn’t that … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Lychee Keen at Hai Hai

Outside of Hai Hai in Northeast Minneapolis, the snow banks are growing and the wind is howling. Inside, there’s sugar cane being pressed, limes being juiced, and a thicket of green herbs covering the bar. As long as I don’t leave this bar seat, it’s no longer winter as far as I’m concerned. Let’s keep … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktails: Martini recipes from Marvel Bar

Gin, vermouth, bitters, ice, stir, strain. The most classic of all cocktails is as simple as it is spectacular. Here, the martini experts at Marvel Bar offer five takes: On Marvel’s house martini Peder Schweigert, General Manager “You’re trying to create this thing that is greater than the sum of its parts. It’s not about … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Walter Mondale at Young Joni’s Back Bar

February drinking in Minnesota often leads us down dark alleys into dark basements, drinking dark spirits to soothe our darkening spirits. But this alley behind Dangerous Man Brewing is leading me toward something a little more lighthearted. “It’s served up, it’s elegant, and has this really pretty color,” says Adam Gorski, pouring a copper-orange drink … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: I’m Trying to Break Your Heart at Hewing Hotel

The lobby of the Hewing Hotel looks so charming in winter. A glowing fireplace, surrounded by warm accents and cozy chairs. If we were in the mountains, it would be the kind of place you’d wind down with a bourbon après-ski. But Trish Gavin, who leads the cocktail program here, steers us toward something lighter. … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Rum and Julmust at Spoon and Stable

Nathaniel Smith has been in Europe lately, researching spirits and mixing in bartending competitions. We meet one afternoon at Spoon and Stable, where he and Robb Jones, and the rest of the talented stable hands are working on a winter cocktail menu. With the wind blustering and the snowflakes gathering, we chat about a more … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Jackalope at The Velveteen

On a quiet side street in downtown Stillwater, leaves skitter across the pavement through the orange glow of the few street lamps shining onto the sidewalk. Around the corner, in the lobby of an event center, a Rorschachian pair of rabbits etched on the floor lead through a nondescript door and downstairs to The Velveteen’s … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Fall Cide-Car at Lyn 65

October means apples in the Upper Midwest. On your obligatory orchard trip in the next few weeks, consider snagging a jug of cider to mix into a seasonal cocktail. We’ll let our friend Jami Olson, who you’ll find behind the bar at Lyn 65, explain: “The change of seasons always inspires what’s on our menu, … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Garden Sling at Lawless Distilling

The impending chills of October may have you craving hot drinks (See: Spirits Close-Up). But not so fast—there’s still time to eek out a few drams of summer. I mean, just look at your herb garden. It’s about to bite the dust. And what can you do with a full bush of thyme and all … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: No Sleep ‘Til Brooklyn at Dakota Jazz Club

The circumstances always dictate the right drink, and the quirks are what make them memorable. Last week, I ordered a Brooklyn cocktail at the Dakota Jazz Club, turned around to clap for a bass solo, turned back around and there it was in front of me. I was surprised. I hadn’t heard the rattle of … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Wilde at Bar Brigade

Drinking at Bar Brigade is all about rosé on tap and riffs on cocktails that were popular in fin de siècle Paris. We settle in a cozy nook, brimming with greenery, and pass on a pretty French wine list in favor of a cloudy cocktail to beat back the sweltering afternoon. Haden Riles is behind the … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Campfire Rob Roy at Ngon Bistro

Most restaurants on University Avenue in St. Paul deliver excellent food at the expense of their ambiance. I’ll happily eat a banh mi from a grocery store or a bowl of pho in an unadorned plastic booth. But when it’s happy hour, I want to escape. I want to drink in summer as I drink … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Swedezerac at Fika

It’s a splendid May afternoon and I’m gazing up at turrets and spires, relaxing in the courtyard of a castle. Inside, there’s a stark white cafe where I found a bitter and spicy cocktail that feels just right for the season. [pro_ad_display_adzone id=”35969″ align=”right” info_text=”Advertisement” info_text_position=”above” font_color=”#6d6d6d” font_size=”13″ padding=”10″ background_color=”#ffffff” border=”2″ border_color=”#878787″] “I’ve been playing … [ Read more]

Craft Cocktail: Branch Water at Norseman Distillery

On the first beautiful day of spring, I was admiring the Wüsthofs at Eversharp when I noticed the patio at Norseman Distillery. A single table was bathed in golden sunlight, as if the heavens had sent down a reservation placard for me and my girlfriend. We skipped across the parking lot to that table and, … [ Read more]