Craft Cocktails in San Francisco
Unless you live underneath a rock, you know that the craft cocktail movement is heavily upon us. Throughout the country, bartenders (sorry, mixologists) are pulling out all the stops to try and create the most decadent, memorable, and well-balanced cocktail ever. Like with most things, the coasts are where most of the energy is being divested and where the trend experiences its epicenter, and San Francisco especially finds itself at the core of a drink movement that many consider as being the zenith of beverage culture.
The following bars are some of the most popular and innovative in the San Francisco craft cocktail scene. If you are looking for a great place to grab a drink to begin or end a night on the town, these are the places to go.
(155 Columbus Ave.)
Located in historic North Beach, Comstock occupies a space that has been serving spirits since 1907. The manager of the bar, Johnny Raglin, has been a mainstay of the Bay Area’s cocktail scene since its inception, and delights in bringing fresh twists to classic cocktails like Manhattans, Sazeracs, and Negronis. Not simply for sipping, this bar also serves food in a turn-of-the-century style. With its classy atmosphere, stunning drinks, and impeccable service, the Comstock Saloon is not to be missed.
(355 11th St.)
Bar Agricole takes the prize for Most Modern Cocktail Bar in the City. Its ultra-chic atmosphere is certainly breathtaking, but that’s nothing compared to what you’ll experience when you order one of their handcrafted beverages. Try the Hallelujah (Armagnac, aged agricole, vermouth, grenadine, and bar spoon lime), the Bellamy Scotch Sour (blended scotch, lemon, honey, pitters, and egg whites), or the Sleepyhead (brandy, ginger, mint, lime, sparkling wine), or any of their other cocktail options. Really, just close your eyes and point at the menu, because anything you order will reshape the way you think about cocktails. In addition to their drinks, Bar Agricole has an extensive food menu that attains the same level of virtuosity as the cocktails.
(3010 20th St.)
Famous before it even opened, Trick Dog is known for its quirky, yet cozy atmosphere, it’s cooler-than-cool bartenders, and, of course, its cocktails. Located in a converted warehouse space, the Trick Dog manages to dazzle while never breaking a sweat. A large part of this is because of the food. More than any other cocktail joint, the Trick Dog spares no expense when it comes to serving lovingly prepared and carefully presented food that manages to fuse together disparate styles into one astonishing dish. So, don’t just come thirsty, because the cocktails at Trick Dog taste even better with a plate of their cuisine.