Food & Drink

Phoenix's Bartender of the Year Shakes Up Cocktail Culture

Published On 11/01/2016 Published On 11/01/2016
Christopher Galli
Counter Intuitive
Christopher Galli
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1. UnderTow 3620 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix, AZ 85018

Undertow is a rather brand-new underground cocktail lounge (having opened summer of 2016), serving tiki-inspired drinks to whisk you away to that island-getaway you've been meaning to take... if only in your imagination. Located in central Phoenix, it's had lines stretching out the door since its grand opening, so be sure to get there early!

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2. Okra 5813 N 7th St, Phoenix, AZ 85014

The stylish, brick-lined Okra brings Southern cooking with an Italian twist to Phoenix with eats such as fried chicken skins & honey hot sauce, catfish al forno, a pimento cheeseburger, and fried chicken served three different ways: buttermilk-brined, Tennessee hot, and Umbrian-style. From the team behind Crudo and Bar Crudo, Okra slings an expansive list of wines, craft beers, and cocktails, too, including a seasonal collection of Mint Juleps with high-quality small-batch bourbons.

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3. Kazimierz World Wine Bar 7137 E Stetson Dr, Scottsdale, AZ 85251 (Old Town Scottsdale)

Don't worry about pronouncing the name -- this underground Scottsdale wine bar goes by Kazbar, and offers a selection of (prepare yourself) 2,000 global wines. You can access the cave-like space through a backdoor entrance and, once inside, you'll be greeted by candles, wooden wine casks, and plush couches with live music wafting in the air every night. There's also a selection of craft cocktails and bites including artisan cheeses, sliced meats, fondue, and flatbreads.

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4. Counter Intuitive 7133 E Stetson Dr # D, Scottsdale, AZ 85251 (Old Town Scottsdale)

You could walk into Counter Intuitive one night and it'll be decked out like a Shanghai social club. Another night, it's Picasso's visit to Cuba. A third, it's Bourbon Street in New Orleans. You'll never get bored with this intimate cocktail lounge in Scottsdale, considering its theme changes several times a year -- from the decor to the food to the drinks. The menu elevates your typical bar bites with snacks like bacon beignets, and the cocktails are expertly crafted, with past concoctions including a classic pisco sour with snap pea-infused pisco and watermelon syrup, and the "Sippin Tea in the LBC," made with apricot, thyme, jasmine tea, yuzu, orange bitters, and Del Maguey Vida Mezcal.



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