By Bartender Hien Truong
The first thing that I do when I create a cocktail is think about flavor pairings. I break down the flavor nuances in the spirit and then find ingredients that will complement and highlight the spirit instead of overtaking it. I try to utilize seasonal ingredients when I can and source out the best quality ingredients to go into the cocktail. The leaders of the mixology world have invested a lot of time in creating the cocktail culture here in Las Vegas, so I try to cater my cocktails to the trends of this city, as the clientele here has grown to expect a certain level of ingenuity and quality from the drinks they order. I love Las Vegas because it is a destination traveled by people all over the world and gives you the opportunity be able to put yourself out there locally and have it touch people globally. It's an amazing feeling.
Here are 6 great cocktail bars I recommend visiting in Las Vegas.
In a city where you can get lost in mega-clubs and casinos, it's nice to go into a bar like Velveteen Rabbit, which feels completely separate from the expected Las Vegas scene. Great decor and a consistently rotating beer and cocktail list, you will be able to try something new every time you visit.
1218 South Main Street, Las Vegas, NV 89104
Herbs & Rye
An amazing place with a local and friendly feel. Environment is extremely welcoming and the food and cocktails are great. Bartenders really focus on their craft and take a lot of pride in what they send across the bar. You will be able to tell this with each and every cocktail you order.
3713 West Sahara Avenue, Las Vegas, NV 89102
T: 702.982.8036 | www.herbsandrye.com
The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
I love going to The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas because they have unique bars that cater to how I would like to spend my night. Every lounge has different energy, cocktails, and overall experience. Property mixologist Mariena Mercer utilizes her chemistry background to create fun, great cocktails (in both presentation and taste) and finds ways to utilize ingredients not commonly found behind a bar.
The Cosmopolitan Hotel
3708 South Las Vegas Boulevard, Las Vegas, NV 89109
T: 702.698.7000 | www.cosmopolitanlasvegas.com
Downtown Las Vegas
Frankie's Tiki Room
A super fun and great bar. Cocktails are notated with skulls to inform guests of how strong a drink will be -- ten skulls always equal a good time. For me, the skulls, the staff, and the whimsical decor create a really memorable experience. If anything, sometimes I enjoy drinking out of a tiki statue and every once in a while, a hula dancer.
1712 West Charleston Boulevard, Las Vegas, NV 89102
T: 702.385.3110 | www.frankiestikiroom.com
Located in Downtown Las Vegas, The Griffin offers great drinks and bartenders, but the reason why I go here is the overall ambiance of this bar. The room is lit with dim candles and a fireplace, which creates a relaxing and comforting atmosphere. You could be sitting right next to another group of patrons and still feel as though you are having an intimate time with everyone you are with.
511 Fremont Street, Las Vegas, NV 89101
Downtown Cocktail Room
When I am downtown and want to take a break from everything going on on Fremont Street, I sneak away to the Downtown Cocktail Room. The decor and music create a low key and sensual atmosphere that enhances the cocktails being served. The bartenders are knowledgeable and can construct you a special cocktail, tailored to your liking.
111 South Las Vegas Boulevard, Las Vegas, NV 89101
T: 702.880.3696 | www.downtowncocktailroom.com
Bartender Hien Truong
Bar Manager at Bazaar Meat by José Andrés in Las Vegas, where he creates inventive molecular cocktails as well as classics. Previously, he was the lead bartender at Rose.Rabbit.Lie. at The Cosmopolitan, Hakkasan, The Chandelier bar, and Yard House.
Bazaar Meat by José Andrés
Bazaar Meat's cocktail focus is to utilize fresh ingredients and great spirits to highlight not only classic cocktails but fun inventive cocktails, as well those that utilizes tools from liquid nitrogen and cedar boards to smoke and fire. The list also changes with the seasons to incorporate great ingredients you wouldn't be able to find year round.
2535 South Las Vegas Boulevard, Las Vegas, NV 89109
T: 855.761.7757 | slslasvegas.com/dining
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