In Good Spirits

There’s just something about summer in Lake Tahoe that draws you in and breathes life into your lungs. Whether spending the day at the Lake or enjoying entertainment, any option is sure to keep you on your toes – and work up a thirst. If looking for libations to start your adventure, or just whet your whistle, we have you covered. These options around Truckee and Tahoe have been vetted and are awaiting your arrival. Cheers!


The Details: Even though OTT shuffles their drink menu up quite often, this one is available year-round. The ingredients spoken here are Japanese whiskey, lemon, hibiscus, and Manzanilla sherry. The hibiscus gives it a great color and adds a unique taste to this sophisticated spin with Arnold Palmer vibes. It’s complex yet balanced, and is a refreshing splash no matter what time of the day it is.

Old Town Tap

The Location: Old Town Tap, 10164 Donner Pass Rd. #1 (Truckee)

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The Details: This cocktail has all the feels of pink lemonade gone wild, but it’s not overly sweet or tangy. Hangar 1 vodka, fresh lemon juice, St. Germain elderflower liqueur, simple syrup, and a splash of cranberry juice round out the ingredients. It goes down super easy on a Tahoe winter day, even more so on Frisky Fridays when they are only $5. Super playful and fun.

Fat Cat Frisky Kitty

The Location: Fat Cat Bar & Grill, 599 N Lake Blvd. (Tahoe City)

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The Details: This drink sports Hayman’s gin, coconut-basil-cardamom syrup, lime, cucumber citrus soda, and Thai bitters. It’s a little citrus-y and a tad bit tangy. It all starts with the gin, which compliments the other citrus flavors with some of its own, but also supports the simple syrup in a warm and spicy kind of way. It’s the backbone of the drink for certain, but it also lends smoothness throughout.

Bite In Crowd

The Location: Bite American Tapas, 907 Tahoe Blvd. (Incline Village)

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The Details: This drink is just as playful as its name might suggest – consisting of vanilla vodka, citrus, passion orange guava, and a lilikoi foam. It gets a light dusting of allspice and garnished with a toasted lime wheel. The sweetness from the passionfruit and guava, combined with the little bit of sour from the citrus and the creaminess from the vanilla vodka and foam give you an amazing sip each time.

Fumo Lilikoi Bliss

The Location: Fumo, 120 Country Club Dr. 61 (Incline Village)

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The Details: Daily, fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice is combined with vodka, Chambord, and a splash of Sprite (garnished with a slice of lime). It’s a super refreshing dance down easy drinking boulevard. The grapefruit juice is a difference maker. The freshness (although not too sour) pairs really well with the Chambord and lets the carbonation from the soda breathe life into each sip.

Macduffs How About a Fresca

The Location: Macduff’s Public House, 1041 Fremont Ave. (South Lake Tahoe)

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The Details: The base of this cocktail is Hendrick’s gin. It’s mixed with Lustau P.X. Sherry, tonic water, lime and grapefruit juices, and then garnished with a sprig of rosemary and a slice of grapefruit. The result is a sweet, smooth, earthy, and mildly dry bounce in the foursquare court. The ingredients pal around like they’ve known each other for years – nothing fights. They all just get along like four-year olds on a jungle gym.

Friday Station Gin & Tonic

The Location: Friday’s Station, 15 Hwy 50 (Stateline)

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The Details: Jameson’s Irish whiskey, fresh orange juice, and ginger beer all tidied up with a cinnamon sugar rim are the forces at play here. The result is a slightly fruitier than savory cannonball into a gigantic pile of leaves. There are classic flavor combinations of ginger, cinnamon and sugar but when the citrus kicks in, all bets are off. Once the whiskey shows up you can’t help but give it a standing ovation.

Lucky Beaver Ginger Beaver

The Location: Lucky Beaver, 31 US Hwy 50 #104 (Stateline)

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The Details: The smoke in the name refers to the main spirit: Casamigos Mezcal. It’s combined with St. Germain elderflower liqueur, a smidge of lemon, orange juice, then garnished with a Tajin (chili-lime seasoning) rim and a dried orange. The flavor doesn’t quite push into margaritaville, but you can see the resemblance. The smokiness kicks in and the citrus really shines through. It’s light, airy, and a little more fun than the traditional margarita.

Cocktail Corner Smoke Show

The Location: The Cocktail Corner, 2042 Lake Tahoe Blvd. (South Lake Tahoe)

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