Restaurant Craft Cocktail Recipes

by | Nov 27, 2017

Local restaurants are shaking things up with some innovative and outright ingenious cocktails, inspiring imbibers to craft their own with these favorite recipes.


Viva Bandida, Saltine, Hilton Norfolk The Main
Photo by Jim Pile

Vida Bandida

Serve in a Collins glass

While every last detail is tended to at Coastal Virginia's finest bars, including scratch tinctures, you don’t have to be that obsessive at home. Here, Bittermens Hellfire Habanero Shrub is a suitably-searing commercial substitute for Saltine’s house “Ignition” tincture (so-called because, “It will light you up”).


1.5 oz. Del Maguey Vida Mezcal

.75 oz. lime juice

.5 oz. orange liqueur (Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao preferred)

.25 oz. simple syrup

6 drops Bittermens Hellfire Habanero Shrub

Peychaud’s Bitters and an orange twist for garnish


Combine ingredients in a Collins glass. Add crushed ice and swizzle, using a long spoon to combine the spirits and ice until the outside of the glass is chilled. Top with more crushed ice, and garnish with liberal drops of Peychaud's Bitters and an orange twist.


Ultra Craft Cocktails, Pomegranate Manhattan, Virginia Beach

Pomegranate Manhattan

Serve in a martini glass

In bar speak, “express” means to release the oils from citrus by waving the peel over the glass as well as rubbing it around the inside and outside rim. It’s the secret to alluringly aromatic drinks like this one from Ultra Craft Cocktails.


2 oz. Catoctin Creek Roundstone Rye

1 oz. Carpano Antica Formula sweet vermouth

.25 oz. PAMA Pomegranate Liqueur

Bar spoon of crème de cacao

2 dashes of Bittermens Xocolatl Mole Bitters


Stir all ingredients in a mixing glass and strain into a chilled glass. Garnish with expressed orange or grapefruit peel.


Like a Prayer Cocktail Recipe, Terrapin Virginia Beach
Photo by David Uhrin

Like a Prayer

Serve in a coupe

Dry shake means to shake ingredients in a cocktail shaker without ice. It allows egg whites to emulsify, resulting in a fabulous froth in this drink from Terrapin.


1.5 oz. gin

.5 oz. green Chartreuse

.5 oz. yellow Chartreuse

.75 oz. egg white

.75 oz. lemon juice

.5 oz. simple syrup


Combine all ingredients in cocktail shaker and dry shake. Add ice and shake vigorously. Strain into coupe.


Fin Seafood Newport News, Okie Dokie Artichokie Cocktail Recipe
Photo by Jim Pile

Okie Dokie Artichokie

​Serve in a mini Mason jar

Kitchen torches aren’t just for crème brûlée anymore; they’re ideal for home bars, too, as this quirky cocktail from Fin proves.


1.5 oz. Cynar 70

1 oz. cashew orgeat*

1 oz. fresh lemon juice with pulp removed

.25 oz. mellow corn whiskey

1 fresh local egg white

Sprinkling of loose leaf chia tea


Combine all ingredients except tea in cocktail shaker and dry shake (see method above for Terrapin's Like a Prayer). Add ice to shaker and shake until frost forms on the outside. Strain into mini Mason jar. Wait for froth to form on top. Sprinkle loose chia tea on froth and brûlée with kitchen torch. Let cool before enjoying.

*Orgeat is a simple syrup usually associated with almonds. You can substitute a commercial syrup or make your own: Pulverize 2 1/4 cups cashews in a food processor, then soak them in 3 1/2 cups of water for several hours (stirring occasionally). Strain liquid through a cheesecloth-lined strainer into a glass jar, discard nuts. Add 1/2 cup of cane sugar, close jar lid tightly and shake vigorously until sugar dissolves. Store in refrigerator for up to two weeks.


Linus Van Pelt, Saint Germain, Norfolk, Cocktail Recipe
Photo by David Uhrin

Linus Van Pelt

Serve in a coupe

While we give substitutions for the at-home bartender in some of these recipes, this one from Saint Germain might be better left to the experts.


1.5 oz. pumpkin-infused rye

.75 oz. allspice dram

.5 oz. liquid smoke simple syrup

.5 oz. lemon juice 

2 dashes angostura

2 dashes cranberry bitters

Micro amaranth for garnish


Shake all ingredients then strain into coupe. Smoke (the drink, not a cigarette). Top with micro amaranth.

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