Published on April 1, 2016

11 Cocktails to Be Inspired by in SF

Looking to shake things up the next time you’re eating out? Flip over to the cocktail menu for a handcrafted drink that’ll add an exciting twist to your meal. Whether it’s a splash of something smoky, a fruity concoction or a savory blend straight up or on the rocks, San Francisco is home to a cocktail fix for every taste. Here are 11 inspired beverages to experience in the City by the Bay:

1. APERITIVO - Locanda

SF - Locanda - Italian - Cocktails lineup with bartender in the background - Eric Wolfinger Photo provided by Locanda. Photo by Eric Wolfinger.

Dive into several Italian-inspired options at Locanda, including the Aperitivo mixed with Campari, orange, lemon and Prosecco (an Italian white wine).


Jason Fox, Commonwealth, Mint Plaza Photo provided by Oro. Photo by Nader Khouri.

As easy to drink as it is on the eyes, The November Rain at Oro is a gorgeous mashup of tequila, Amaro Meletti (an Italian herbal liqueur), turmeric, lime and Angostura bitters.

3. PISCO SOUR - Mochica

SF - Mochica - Peruvian - Cocktail - Pisto_Sour Photo provided by Mochica.

A South American classic, the pisco sour is reimagined two ways at Mochica. The Chica Sour is made with Chica Morada (a sweet Peruvian beverage made from purple corn) and the Maracuya Sour with passion fruit reduction — both shaken with fresh lime juice, simple syrup and egg whites.


SF - 25 Lusk- Contemporary American - Cocktail - Yellow Cocktail Photo provided by 25 Lusk.

Made with fresh grapefruit, gin, dry vermouth (a fortified wine flavored with botanicals like flowers, seeds and herbs), lime and Angostura bitters, the Grapefruit Gimlet brings a kick of flavor, sure to liven up the night.

5. DARKEST DAWN - Jardiniere

SF - Jardiniere - Californian - Cocktail - Darkdrink with lemon peel (1) Photo provided by Jardinere.

Linger over Jardinere’s Darkest Dawn — an understated, sophisticated tipple with rye, Barolo Chinato (a fortified wine), Nocino walnut liqueur and bitters.


SF - Spruce - American - Grey Goose Cocktail Photo provided by Spruce.

Citrusy and bright, the Greyhound’s Tooth at Spruce consists of Russian Standard Platinum Vodka, Bénédictine (a French herbal liqueur), grapefruit, lemon and grapefruit bitters for a refreshing wake-up call.

7. NEGRONI - Maybeck's

SF - Spaghetti Bros - Contemporary American - Cocktail - Negroni Photo provided by Maybeck's.

A classic cocktail that’s hard to beat, the negroni at Maybeck's is made with Plymouth Gin, Campari and Cocchi Vermouth di Torino.

8. FORBIDDEN LOWBALL  - Myriad Gastro Pub

SF - Myriad Gastro Pub - American - Cocktail - Forbidden_Lowball Photo provided by Myriad Gastro Pub.

A perfect match for Myriad Gastro Pub’s globally inspired comfort food, the Forbidden Lowball has Cardamaro (an Italian digestif flavored with herbs and spices), lime, ginger beer and Forbidden Bitters.

9. BENGALI GIMLET - Dosa on Fillmore

SF - Dosa - Indian - Cocktail - Bengali Photo provided by Dosa on Fillmore.

Go for a refreshing and complex sipper with the Bengali Gimlet, shaken up with Tanqueray Rangpur Gin, curried nectar and fresh lime.


SF - La Urbana - Mexican - Cocktail - Mexican Dude Orchata Photo provided by La Urbana.

For something a bit creamier, try The Mexican Dude, La Urbana’s mix of homemade horchata (a Mexican beverage often made with ground almonds, rice, barley or sesame seeds), rum, Borghetti espresso-coffee liqueur and cinnamon.

11. FLOATING DECIMAL - Old Bus Tavern

SF - Old Bus Tavern - American - Cocktail - Assortment of Cocktails Photo provided by Old Bus Tavern.

Choose from an assortment of fun craft cocktails at Old Bus Tavern, including the Floating Decimal, made with mezcal, Ancho Reyes Chile Liqueur, watermelon and lime.

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