SF Bay Area
Food and drink that has us seeing gold
While in Austin this July Beautiful Booze did a little exploring to find the best craft cocktail bars. Austin has been getting a lot of attention recently for their ever-growing scene and we were excited to experience it first hand. Luckily we found a few recent articles from Thrillist and worked our way through them. Here are the top 4 bars we discovered during our time there.
Midnight cowboy is said to be an old “massage” parlor that was converted into a beautiful speakeasy style bar in the middle of lively 6th Street. If you weren’t looking for it you would walk right past and never know what you missed out on. Reservations are highly recommended and the venue is usually booked a few days in advance. Upon arrival at the shadowy doorway you will see a panel off apartment will be buzzers and there may be a few names you recognize but make sure to hit Harry Craddocks one to gain entry. The cocktails here lived up to the hype and the venue itself was decorated exactly as you would expect a speakeasy to be. Make sure to order one of their amazing cocktails crafted table side on a bar cart for the best experience.
The great staff at Midnight Cowboy pointed us in the direction of our next bar, Small Victory. This new bar is not in the middle of a busy street and again if you weren’t looking for it you would never see it. A few streets back from 6th Street and outwardly all alone you have to look for the door with their logo marked on it, and then walk up a flight of stairs. Once you step through the doorway you are seemingly transported to an upscale Manhattan cocktail bar complete with exposed brick behind the bar. This is a meeting place for those in the know and a great source for those new to Austin wanting to connect with people in the local industry. Make sure you try the Artists’ Special cocktail with Scotch Whisky, Sherry, Lemon Juice and Grenadine.
Again running on a recommendation from the previous venue we found ourselves at this upscale bar that reminded us of a luxurious hotel bar with an extensive back bar and walls filled with book shelves. It was getting close to the end of the evening so the bar was quiet and we had more of an opportunity to converse with the staff, who were very pleasant. The cocktails were delicious and the space warm and welcoming with big couches for groups to gather and comfortable seats at the bar for people like us who like a more personable experience. This is a new venue on the block with a big window allowing everyone a clear view into the venue.
While in Austin we stayed at the Four Seasons Hotel and spent an evening working our way through the cocktail list of The Lobby Lounge. The cocktails here are not what people generally think of when looking into hotel bars, like many others the Four Seasons group have really stepped up their cocktail game. Using a variety of locally sourced ingredients like fruits and spirits they have constructed a very respectable cocktail list you would expect to find in a craft cocktail establishment. The Pimm’s Coupe here is a must try but they are certainly not limited in their range, you may even find your palate wanting something with a bit more punch like their aptly named Donkey Kick cocktail with Serrano infused mezcal, grapefruit, agave, and champagne.
Founder and creator of the cocktail website and blog Beautiful Booze. Natalie is a mixologist, cocktail stylist, photographer, recipe developer, and social media guru. Beautiful Booze the website features over 400 original recipes and photography that celebrate cocktails. From "DIY" bourbon tastings to simple 2-ingredient cocktails Beautiful Booze has something special shaking for everyone. Beautiful Booze has been named one of the top 5 cocktail Instagram accounts to follow and Natalie has a passion for Instagram and social media. Natalie is a regular contributor to Foodable WebTV, Drinkwire, Vinepair, and Delish. Her recipes have been featured on Liquor.com, Huffington Post, Fox News Magazine, Today Show, Latin Kitchen, Cosmopolitan, Pop Sugar, Country Living and many more.