Do you take your drinks shaken or stirred? Today is national cocktail day, and to help you celebrate, we’ve done all the mixing for you and whipped up a list of 8 local cocktails you can order to wet your whistle.
Head to The Bar at The Joinery (640 E. Main St.) Thursdays until 9 p.m. or Fridays between 11 a.m.-11 p.m. for a tropical treat known as Get Out Maguey. Olmeca Altos Tequila and Del Maguey Vida Mezcal accompany chinola passion fruit, lime + orange. Topped with jalapeño agave and egg white, this is one way to transport yourself to a sandy beach (at least, in your imagination).
Keep your seat at The Bar, because we’re sticking around for a second drink. Enter: Thyme Keeps on Sippin’. Strawberry + thyme-infused Caravedo Quebranta Pisco, brut sparkling wine, lemon and thyme syrup, and strawberry boba blend together to make this crisp cocktail something to remember. Boba in a cocktail? We’ll take two.
The Knuckledragger margarita has been on the menu at Federal Bar (124 S. Tennessee Ave.) since its opening in 2018. Pineapple-infused tequila, house-made habanero bitters, lime, agave syrup, gran gala liqueur, and a tajin rim are served fresh Thursdays from 3-11 p.m. and Fridays from 3 p.m.-1 a.m.
Grillsmith (1569 Town Center Dr.) recommends its signature cocktail, the smoked old-fashioned. The bev features Woodford Reserve bourbon, aromatic bitters, filthy black cherry, orange peel, and cedar smoke. They’re open Thursdays until 9:30 p.m., with happy hour from 4-7 p.m.
If there’s a night to get a seat on Nineteen61’s outdoor patio and sip on something decadent, it’s tonight. Head to 215 E. Main St. and ask for the Dragon Fizz, featuring Brazilian açaí gin, sake, and fresh lemon juice, topped off with mint and chia seeds. Looking for something on the classic side? Members of local podcast Florida Men on Florida Man recommend the smoked old-fashioned.
The Strawberry Festival may be behind us, but that doesn’t mean the season of berry-delicious recipes is behind us. Head to Red Door Lakeland (733 E. Palmetto St.) and order the Strawberry Fields Cocktail, featuring Cathead Mississippi vodka, strawberry-vanilla shrub, and fresh basil. Pro tip: try the “mocktail” version of this for all the berries and none of the buzz by ordering the Strawberry Shrub Soda.
Do you like your cocktail with a kick? Head to The Terrace Grille (329 E. Main St.) for a frothy espresso martini, featuring Tito’s vodka, Kahlua, kamora, tia maria, and espresso, of course. Happy hour takes place from 4-7 p.m., but you can come by as late as 9 p.m. on Thursdays or 10 p.m. Friday-Saturday.
Take getting a brew to the next level by ordering the Wicked Coffee Coldbrew cocktail at The Yard on Mass (802 N. Massachusetts Ave.). They’re open Thursdays from 4-9 p.m, with Jukebox Bingo starting at 7 p.m. If decaf is more your style, we recommend skipping the caffeine and ordering a classic Moscow Mule or Margarita.
Not into alcohol? Many of the businesses on this list also serve up handcrafted mocktails. Check out seven spots to order up a booze-free bev here.