10 Favorite Cocktails of 2016

10 Favorite Cocktails of 2016 - TrophyCocktail

As we begin a new year, here’s a look back at ten favorite drinks selected from TrophyCocktail’sCocktail of the Day” that are great examples of the creativity and dedication that we saw from all over the world in 2016. The pursuit of craft cocktails is thriving! And to that, we say, “Cheers!”


Trophy Expert and Cocktail Wonk blogger Matt Pietrek has captured and shared many wonderful images of tiki culture and the bars in Washington. Here is bartender Justin Wojslaw making a “Cuba Kula” at The Diller Room in Seattle.

"Cuba Kula" at The Diller Room
“Cuba Kula” at The Diller Room with Justin Wojslaw.



We’ve had the chance to imbibe a few of these and the “Harmony Cocktail” by rising star Raul Ayala of Dirty Habit with Ford’s Gin, ginger, turmeric, salt, and lime, topped with beer is a truly delightful concoction. The bright color of turmeric and vibrant taste of ginger and lime make you feel like this cocktail has some real health benefits.

"Harmony Cocktail" by Raul Ayala
“Harmony Cocktail” by Raul Ayala



Healdsburg hotspot Duke’s Spirited Cocktails is showing up on lots of ‘best of’ lists. “Liquid Cashmere” by Laura Sanfilippo with bourbon, rum, carrot ginger shrub, coconut, and lime shows off their creativity. And we love the sensuous name; you can almost taste it!

"Liquid Cashmere" by Laura Sanfilippo
“Liquid Cashmere” by Laura Sanfilippo



With the largest collection of gin in North America, the gorgeous Whitechapel in San Francisco is THE place to discover interesting gin cocktails. “Ivy League Legacy” by house gin somm and TrophyCocktail Expert Keli Rivers with Bombay Sapphire Gin, fennel juice, pineapple gum and lime would be a great place to start.

 "Ivy League Legacy" by Keli Rivers
“Ivy League Legacy” by Keli Rivers



TrophyCocktail is lucky to have blogger “The World Is My Cocktail” from London sharing her local discoveries and this pic of “Jimson Blossom” at Dandelyan for the Georgia O’Keefe exhibit at the Tate. It shows off why this bar won Tales of the Cocktail’s accolade “World’s Best Cocktail Menu” in 2016.

"Jimson Blossom" at Dandelyan
“Jimson Blossom” at Dandelyan


6.)  AREA 51

Also nominated for “World’s Best Cocktail Menu”, Trick Dog launches a new, highly creative concept menu a few times a year and their “Top Secret Menu” was one of our favorites! TrophyCocktail Expert Geneveive Porter snapped this pic of “Area 51” featuring Absolut Vodka, Ancho Reyes, apple, egg white and lime and a cheeky, alien face stencil garnish.

"Area 51" snapped by TrophyCocktail Expert Genevieve Porter at Trick Dog
“Area 51” snapped by TrophyCocktail Expert Genevieve Porter at Trick Dog



Smoky, handsome, and dangerous could be words to describe both bartender Justin Lavenue of the Roosevelt Room in Austin and his cocktail called “Cigar Box” featuring mezcal, lavender, tobacco bitters and lapsang souchong syrup.

"Cigar Box" by Justin Lavenue
“Cigar Box” by Justin Lavenue



The shot of “Sea Above, Sky Below. The Backwards Voyager” by James Downs at Selden Standard in Detroit is lyrically colorful. This cocktail with St. George Terroir Gin, St. George Absinthe, and Salers Gentiane Aperitif highlights the fact Detroit is an upcoming market to watch for innovative craft cocktails in 2017.

"Sea Above, Sky Below. The Backwards Voyager" by James Downs
“Sea Above, Sky Below. The Backwards Voyager” by James Downs



“Mutiny on the Bounty” by George Lahlouh of San Jose hotspot Paper Plane with Plantation Stiggins Fancy, Maurin Quina, lemon sherbet, whole egg, and Bittercube Cherry Bark Vanilla Bitters is a unique combination of ingredients. It sounds so silky. We feel this is another city to watch as their cocktail community grows in the coming year.

"Mutiny on the Bounty" by George Lahlouh
“Mutiny on the Bounty” by George Lahlouh



Negroni Week always brings some really interesting riffs on the classic and this was our favorite post from that week in 2016. “Nagima of the East” by Umar Shareef of East Bay Spice Company with Bols Genever, Carpano Bianco, spiced porridge water, bitter hibiscus tea, and citric acid is a fascinating variation served in an elegant tea pot.

"Nagima of the East" by Umar Shareef
“Nagima of the East” by Umar Shareef