Sunday, October 30, 2016

Cocktails...with or without the view

Bartenders in San Miguel have been elevating drinks to a new level and nothing sets off a carefully constructed cocktail more than a picturesque view of downtown San Miguel. The combination can’t be beat, even on a gloomy night.

We’ve done all the hard work for you so you’ll know your drink options and your bartenders on a first name basis before you go. Have you ever noticed that when you call someone by their first name, you go from customer to friend in a matter of minutes? Remembering a name is always a game changer. I always go to a bar on an off night just to get to know the staff before I bring guests.

We also added a few places at the finish because their extensive drink choices delight, with or without the view.

Don’t visit all of these bars in one night; we did. After awhile, even I couldn’t keep up with the tequila confessions… and some of them were mine.

Buen Apetito!

Luna Rooftop Tapas Bar
Rosewood Hotel, Nemesio Diez 11

Sprawling views of the city make this rooftop a must see whether you’re thirsty or not; a 360-degree spectacle certain to take your breath away, especially at sunset. Bring lots of pesos; the vista comes with a price but it’s worth it. I would know; I keep going back.

Cocktail Menu: Artisan cocktails inspired by Rosewood’s Sense of Place philosophy with a special focus on organic ingredients found in the region using a wide range of liquors – gin, vodka, whiskey and rum - as a base. No blenders allowed; all the drinks are crafted by hand using a selection of fresh ingredients, herbs and spices.
Try the Mojito Allende with Havana 7 Rum, mint, sugar, lavender flowers, soda water and lemon. We also love their classics like this vodka martini served in an oversized Margarita glass.
Bartenders: Oscar, Daniel, Luis and Jose. Confused with four? You’ll have to go back more often just to keep them all straight.
Cuna de Allende 15

A rooftop restaurant with in-your-face views of the Parroquia. Stylish and casual, you’ll never want to leave, especially in a rainstorm when you can reach to the side of the table and grab one of their beautiful, white umbrellas to keep you dry. We enjoy our drink at the high table facing the Parroquia; it’s got the best views, rain or shine. A throwback from the 40’s, catch the rolling drink cart; she’ll craft your cocktail tableside. One of our favorite bars, and restaurants, it really doesn’t get much better than this.
Cocktail Menu: Original cocktails made with luxury brands; heavy on the Grey Goose. Quince crafts their classic Margarita just like we do with a simple but sophisticated mix of Don Julio blanco, lime, controy and simple syrup. A few standout tastings include the house Margarita: a blend of Don Julio blanco, cucumber, pineapple, lemon, serrano chile and green chili and the Berry Chant: Grey Goose, cinnamon syrup, raspberry, blackberry, blueberry and strawberry finished with cardamom.
Bartender: Guadalupe
Antonia Bistro SMA
San Francisco 57

Toss in this view and I have to admit, a cocktail here is pretty perfect. A feast for the eyes as well as the taste buds. You’ll want to grab the high, center table to catch the brilliant colors of a SMA sunset; it’s nothing short of spectacular. Take the elevator down when you can; it’s being newly installed. Even the agave spirits wouldn’t soften the descent after a long night of fiesta.
Cocktail Menu: Choose from their four signature cocktails along with a short but distinctive selection of tequilas and mezcals that play from uplifting to smoky.
Cocktail Antonia:
Prosecco, limoncello, midori, watermelon and mint.
Cocktail Aguachile (pictured)
Mezcal, cucumber, coriander, lemon and chile serrano.

Cocktail PiƱa Pox
Pox (A traditional liqueur from Chiapas), pinapple, mint and lemon.

Cocktail Violeta
Frangelico, ginebra and strawberry.
Exclusive to Antonia Bistro SMA is the Apellation of Origin drinks made from agave spirits; Pox"Siglo Cero" from Chiapas, Sotol "Coyote" from Chihapas, Bacanora "Pascola" from Sonora and Raicilla "Hacienda el Divisadero" from Jalisco.

Bartender: Lourdes. Give her a big tip just for the honor of being one of the few female bartenders in SMA; she’s earned it.

Orizaba #87, San Antonio

People will tell you that you haven’t really seen San Miguel until you’ve looked at it from the rooftop at Zumo. I call it the restaurant with the million dollar view. Here, both the clouds and SMA are reflected in my wine glass. Twinkle twinkle little star; none brighter than this rooftop at 10 PM sipping a sparkling cocktail.
Cocktail Menu: Vodka, Gin, Tequila, Mezcal and Rum are the heart of Zumo’s exceptional cocktails. A playful break from the classics, you’ll be so curious when you read the menu, you’ll want to try them all. Drink in the view; it’s more than spectacular, it’s perfect…and so are the drinks.
Bartender: Jonathan

Jacinto 1930
Relox 14

No views of SMA here but it’s great to sit in one of SMA’s best restaurants, Jacinto 1930, where the cocktails get the same respect from beverage director Adrian Garcia-Evans as the food does from Chef Matteo Salas, one of Mexico’s Top Chefs.

With one of SMA’s most exciting cocktail menus, it’s hard not to say “one of each, please” after sizing up the menu. Serious cocktail aficionados will want to come back every night; I know we do. Experience the Mole Martini; it’s already a SMA classic.

Cocktail Menu: Cocktail chemistry using high-end tequilas and mezcals. An entire section of the menu is dedicated to Casa Dragones Tequila, a brand whose spiritual home is in SMA. Even the Mocktails are something to celebrate.
Bartenders: Israel and Martin

18 Cocktail Room
Relox No. 18 

Sally and Roy Azar’s tasting room may be small but it takes creative cocktails to a sizeable level with a very impressive menu.

This paint-the-town red lounge is tiny and has a single row of red velvet couches you’ll never want to get up from once you’ve settled in. The best cozy couch bar in SMA, don’t write off this view: a 70’s pair of giant, ruby- red lips that is certain to make you dream at night.

Cocktail Menu: Enjoy innovative pours with a complete selection of house cocktails that strike a balance with the classics; 38 in all. Certain to delight even the most refined drinking palate.

My favorite; the Key Lime Pie of course made with Absolut vanilla vodka, Pina and Limon. Even the glass they serve it in is artistic and dazzling.

Bartenders: Alejandro