Craft Cocktails

Destinations for the discriminating drinker

click to enlarge A delicious “Ambidextrious Cocktail” at Volstead Act.
A delicious “Ambidextrious Cocktail” at Volstead Act.

Bardenay Restaurant and Distillery We're all familiar with breweries serving food, but Bardenay was one of the first distilleries in the country to also be a restaurant. With locations in Coeur d'Alene, Boise and Eagle, each specializes in a different spirit. You can't purchase a bottle at the distillery, but order a freshly squeezed citrus cocktail with vodka, because the Coeur d'Alene spot makes it there. 1710 W. Riverstone Dr., Coeur d'Alene, Idaho • 208-765-1540

Black Cypress Black Cypress' cocktail list changes seasonally, but keeps the most popular cocktails, including Eyes Wide Shut — gin, iris-flower liqueur, Mastiha and fresh lime. Pair a bottle of wine from the extensive list from the Pacific Northwest to "far away," with dishes from countries along the Mediterranean offered on the menu. 215 E. Main Ct., Pullman, Wash. • 334-5800

Bon Bon The Garland is Spokane's longest-running independent theater, and though Bon Bon's cocktail list isn't long, this tiny cocktail lounge's classic drinks are worth checking out before a movie. Both the grenadine and tonic are handmade, along with other seasonal mixers and eggnog in the winter. Bingo is held every Wednesday at 8 pm. 924 W. Garland Ave. , Spokane, Wash. • 413-1745

Butcher Bar Chef Jeremy Hansen has proved to Spokane that he can create a mean menu at Santé, and Butcher Bar shows his farm-to-table philosophy is also successful when applied to a craft cocktail and small plates bar. The drinks are listed by the main liquor, so pick one and trust Butcher Bar with the rest. 404 W. Main Ave. , Spokane, Wash. • 315-4613

Clover Clover splits its extensive drink menu into descriptive categories — seasonal, effervescent, crisp, exuberant, spirited and current — to give patrons an idea of what's in store. Kicking off the "Crisp" section, the Jasmine cocktail is a true original. The bluish-pink creation of bartender Paul Harrington boasts an ingredient list of gin; fresh lemon juice; Campari, an Italian bitter; and Cointreau, an orange-flavored liqueur, garnished with a lemon twist. 913 E. Sharp Ave. , Spokane, Wash. • 487-2937

El Que The Elk's next-door neighbor in Browne's Addition combines Catholic décor with a long list of tequilas. Its cocktail list features more than infused tequilas, including sangria. Order chips and salsa or guacamole, or some of the more filling options such as tacos or banana leaf tamales. 141 S. Cannon St., Spokane, Wash. • 624-5412

Press With 22 taps and cocktails incorporating freshly squeezed juices, this South Hill spot has the offerings of an upscale pub with a comfortable feel. Its Sunday Bloody Mary bar provides all trimmings to make yourself a fully loaded, hangover-curing cocktail worthy of a photo.  909 S. Grand Blvd., Spokane, Wash. • 747-7737

Ruins This smaller spot by Kendall Yards only seats 36, but its newly opened patio now provides extra space for people to sip its intricate craft cocktails or enjoy a few items off the weekly themed menu created by chef Tony Brown. The smaller plate sizes encourage people to try a little bit of everything. 825 N. Monroe St. , Spokane, Wash.

The Blind Buck Stylish and hip are two words that come to mind when you walk into this speakeasy/Prohibition-era-style bar. The bartenders zero in on craft cocktails with a selection of classics and their own creations. 204 N. Division St., Spokane, Wash. • 290-6229

Volstead Act Taking its name from the act that established prohibition in America, the Volstead Act prides itself in making cocktails that are as appealing visually as they are to drink while offering a modern spin on the speakeasies of the past. One particularly striking offering is the warm-yellow Wicked Kiss, a deviously delicious drink made with blanco tequila, Strega (a minty Italian liqueur), lemon, cinnamon and pumpkin butter (yes, really). Don't knock it 'til you try it. 12 N. Post St., Spokane, Wash. • 808-2516

Wild Sage Before dinner arrives, grab one of Wild Sage's signature cocktails. (We love their take on the Old Fashioned.) Then enjoy their "regionally sourced Northwest cuisine." The single-malt scotch and small-batch bourbon list accompanies the brandy and cognac selection, along with a list of "lusty libations." 916 W. Second Ave. , Spokane, Wash. • 456-7575

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