Sin City is home to a lot of restaurants and bars, but there are tons of hidden gems that the majority of Las Vegans aren’t unearthing. To help guide us to these potential discoveries, we’ve enlisted some of our city’s beverage players to share their recommendations for a random feature dubbed Cocktail Confidential. Know a bartender who wants to share some top cocktail spots? The tipline is open.
Jeff Tomastik, the president at Derby Spirits, just launched his Ambros Banana Whiskey that infuses alcohol with 100 percent real fruit this fall. He heads up the Henderson-based company as well as Tail & Fin Sushi Burrito & Poke with former Nobu executive chef Karu Wedhas. Here he shares some of his favorite places to grab a drink in Las Vegas.
Which bars or lounges do you turn to when you’re not working?
The bar at Javier’s restaurant in Aria is always a great place for a cocktail and a bite to eat.
The bar at Scotch 80 Prime in the Palms is one of my favorite new additions to Vegas.
The Still at Mirage is a great casual place to watch games.
Which cocktails are most memorable?
The Tamarindo margarita is my absolute favorite drink at Javier’s! After traveling to Mexico, frequently I had never been able to find anywhere in Vegas that could make a cocktail with the tamarind flavor until I tried Javier’s version of the margarita. Try it on the rocks!
Scotch 80 is a great mix of art, steakhouse and vibe dining all in one and the bar is the perfect place to grab a well-crafted cocktail. When I am here, the Westwood Meets Bannie has become my favorite, something about a whiskey and gin cocktail feels like the perfect choice for the atmosphere.
The Still at Mirage is all about being casual and having fun. The Hail Mary is a gigantic bloody Mary topped with what seems like everything in the kitchen. This is perfect for a football Sunday and the bloody Mary mix they use is the perfect amount of spice for me.
Why do you enjoy going there?
Javier’s is one of the very few upscale Mexican restaurants in Vegas so the atmosphere is always amazing and the food has become a staple at the Aria.
Scotch 80 is the perfect mix of new age vibe dining with the classic steakhouse feel. The art collection gives you something new to look at every time you come to the restaurant and I could eat an entire meal off just their sides. Go for the gnocchi!
The Still has plenty of TVs, comfortable seating and is always consistent. When it comes to a sports bar the food needs to have an edge and the Airstream they have in the bar always delivers great eats to match the drinks.
Are there any outstanding coffee cocktails that you enjoy? Where do you go?
The spark plug shots at STK steakhouse in Cosmopolitan are an absolute must have before a long night out and one is for sure not enough. Simple but perfectly done every time.
What about breakfast or brunch drinks? Where do you go?
If I am doing brunch drinks then I am heading to Herringbone. Great patio atmosphere and the best refreshing Tom Collins.
Where do you like to stop for a wide selection of beer?
If I need a cocktail break, which doesn’t happen often, I would head down to Tacos & Beer for a great selection of beer options.
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