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Aug 16, 2007 02:20 PM

ISO: An Old-School Bartender in Central Phoenix

I'm looking for a cool old-school bartender. You know, the ones who make drinks from scratch - no mix. They know the right garnishes to put on the side of your drink. And while they might be willing to serve you a Chocolate Chip Cookie Martini, they know it isn't a "real" Martini - it's a mixed drink in a Martini glass.

My group meets once a month and alternates between meeting at people's homes and meeting up at a bar. We drink classic cocktails only - original recipes from the height of the cocktail era. But we've had more trouble that you might expect in finding folks who are both willing to make them and have the ingredients available.

In addition to enjoying an "endangered cocktail" here and there, we also talk about women in history, the history of Phoenix and important issues of the day. So we'd like to meet in a great location - preferably some place with a historic feeling where can actually hold a conversation. If we had to pick though - the bartender is FAR more important! (To get a better feel for what the group is about you can see our blog,


Some shining examples - Durants (amazing atmosphere, real history, great drinks) and Amsterdam (While new, it has that old feel - and it's in a great spot downtown to see both the old and the new parts of Phoenix).

Most likely, you Chowhounds have hit more of the hot spots than I get around to these days. So I thought I'd put it out there to you. Any awesome suggestions in the Central Phoenix area? Thanks in advance, and cheers!

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  1. hiya grrlscout,

    can i join? this sounds right up my alley :D

    i'd add the following to your list. i was totally going to say durants and amsterdam :D

    1. bikini lounge - they'll whip up some sassy drinks for you, and the classics. westley's tended bar for about a million years, and if she hasn't heard of it, it doesn't exist. plus its just damn cool, and westley is great. if she doesn't like you, you won't ever drink at the bikini

    2. thirsty camel bar at the phoenician - gorgeous bar overlooking the city, they have everything, and they aim to please. its one of my fav spots for out of town guests since the view is so spetacular

    3. trader vic's - they seem to revel in the funky tiki scene drinks, i'd give them a whirl. plus its so close to the valley ho, and what a great piece of history

    4. the new chez nous when they open again on grand ave - always a good spot for the classics. can't wait for them to re-open

    hope that helps :)

    1 Reply
    1. re: winedubar

      Thanks for your suggestions! I just visited Bikini Lounge for the first time this past week. I totally had a blast and would go back in a heartbeat. But I'm not sure the bar staff would know a Pink Squirrel from a PBR.

      Thirsty Camel and Trader Vic's both sound like they have just the right vibe, and appropriate stock, but may be too far to be our regular haunt. However, a LUPEC "research expedition" or two would not be out of the question. ;c )

      Finally, Chez Nous is already on our short list. I haven't been there personally. I waited to long, and it up and closed. Definitely a possibility, from what I hear!

      You certainly can join. :c ) If your interested, just shoot an email to , and we'll keep you posted as to the going-on. We're still in the n00b & growing phase, so mostly, lots of organizing stuff is happening.