Explore Charlotte

New Bars and Old Favorites in Charlotte's Cocktail Scene

Cocktail experts and créateurs mix it up all over the Queen City

With local mixologists gaining national and international recognition for their libations and concoctions, it’s no mystery why Charlotte can’t get enough of craft cocktails. 

We're psyched about some of the Queen City's newest cocktail hot spots.

Take Kinship, the Ritz-Carlton’s concept lobby bar that features jazz and Latin music nights, bites to share, and, most importantly, unique cocktails. Truly, they are! If you're in the Uptown neighborhood, stop by and try the Always Have Peach-Other made with limoncello and Ciroc Peach Vodka, lemon juice, a red wine float and finished with a floral garnish.

Over at Haberdish in NoDa, mixologist Colleen Hughes is the reason that this happening hangout is known for more than just fried chicken. Although the chicken is excellent. Her shaken and stirred creations change regularly, by whim and by season, but they always feature an innovative twist—think ball ice infused with real herbs and flowers.

Savor a smoking beverarge at Kinship
Savor a smoking beverarge at Kinship (©Kinship)

The Imperial on North College Street keeps things classic albeit with modern flourishes. Its Twisted Old Fashioned features ginger, and its Royal Apple Mule infuses life into a standard that’s lately a bit been-there, done-that.

And, not yet open a year, The Cotton Room at Belfast Mill has added a cocktail lounge to Brevard Court. The real star at the bar here is the cocktail list, which is serious and focused on bourbon.

Our taste buds and our social agendas can't wait for what's coming up on our radar for spring 2017.

The word is that Zeppelin is slated to open in the South End with a turn-of-the-century steam-punk theme, craft cocktails and small bites, while Dot Dot Dot has a Prohibition-era speakeasy concept and cocktails from mixologist Stefan Heubner, and plans to open in May.

5Church Charlotte's Viper
5Church Charlotte's Viper (Courtesy of 5Church)

While we wait for Zeppelin and Dot Dot Dot to debut we can whet our palates at old favorites. Here's our cheat sheet, and yours. 

Heist Brewery: Don't overlook the beer cocktails, obviously

5Church: Drinks oft rimmed with mixed nuts or topped with a dash of cucumber water 

Aria Tuscan Grill: Italian spin on some classics a la the Limoncello smash

The Asbury: Cocktails are as doted upon as the food; see: sweet potato simple syrup

Dogwood Southern Table and Bar: Excellence that flies under the radar. Leave your bevvy to the bartender's whim

The Cellar at Duckworth's: Southern and smoky

Halcyon: Adventurous yet wholesome. See: fat-washed bourbon or the saturated beets 

Pisces Sushi Bar & Lounge: Bourbon-lemon-chai tea take on a hot toddy

Soul Gastrolounge: Boozy offerings as exotic and varied as its food menu—and there's even one on tap

The Summit Room: Seven signature cocktails are named for world mountains