You might fancy yourself an at-home mixologist and maybe you have been building up that home bar selection into something quite respectable. Well, it's time to put all of those bottles to use and learn how to implement their boozey goodness in the best way possible. Luckily, there are a few spots in town offering up classes for folks who want to learn more about spirits, mixing drinks, and the history and styles of both.
Whiskey Wednesdays at Second Story Liquor Bar John Christie is a man who likes his whiskey. As the former barman behind Scottsdale's now defunct Old Town Whiskey, it's really no surprise, so if you want to learn about the brown spirit, you should head over to his new Old Town Scottsdale spot, Second Story Liquor Bar, and learn all you can from him during his Whiskey Wednesdays series. Christie, being both a fabulous and engaging storyteller as well as an encyclopedia of booze knowledge (and other thing too, really), will definitely entertain during classes like October 15's look at American whiskey, Irish whiskey on November 19, and Scottish whiskey on December 17. Classes are $40 and run approximately two hours from 5:30 until 7:30 p.m.. For more information and to make your reservation, call Second Story Liquor Bar at 480-945-5555.
Private Room Cocktail Classes at The Gladly After the smashing success of Brian Goodwin's Summer Cocktail Camp series, he's bringing back classes to The Gladly, but this time it's about to get personal. Well, Goodwin's at least limiting the class sizes down to just 12 people in the private dining room to provide for some real hands-on instruction. Unlike other classes in town, Goodwin's Biltmore-area series will feature multiple spirits in one class so if you're not, say, a rum drinker (though you should start that soon) there will be plenty for you to enjoy still in the class. The courses run every other Sunday from 1 until 3 p.m. beginning on October 12 with a Campari America course featuring Skyy Vodka, Bulldog Gin, and, of course, Campari. Call The Gladly at 602-759-8132 to reserve your spot as space is very limited.
Spirit Guide Mixology Classes at Last Drop Bar Applying the term "spirit guide" to Travis Nass really means a few things: He'll teach you about booze, sure, but he'll also get you excited about it, infusing his passion and enthusiasm in each course on the third Sunday of every month. On October 19, for instance, he'll be teaching a 10 person crash course on everything you'd need to know about gin. From 2 until 4 p.m., he'll demonstrate two gin cocktails that you get to taste, the history and different styles of the spirit, and get to ask all the burning gin questions you might have from a man who would definitely know. If gin isn't your thing, first of all, what's wrong with you, but second of all, you can drop into November's class on rum or January's class on American whiskey. Nass' classes are $30 per person and you can reserve a spot in the intimate course sessions by calling 602-955-7878.
Master Scotch Seminars at The Scotch Library at The Westin Kierland Resort Scotch is certainly an acquired taste, but once you acquire that love of the peaty stuff, you never go back. However, there is admittedly a level of snootiness to Scotch drinking that can make it intimidating to get into, but fear not. The Westin Kierland Resort is here to help with monthly Scotch seminars from masters of the spirit. On October 16, John Trainer will be offering up Glenmorangie 18 year, La Santa, Nectar d'Or, and Quinta Ruban. On November 13, Mitch Bechard will be offering Glenfiddich 12 year, 15 year, 18 year, and Cask of Dreams. Finally, on December 12, Tom Turner will serve up knowledge and tastes of Oban 14 year, 18 year, Talisker Distillers Edition, and Talisker 18 year. Classes begin at 6:30 p.m. and are $50 per person with Scotch tastings and light food pairings. Reserve your spot in this unique master Scotch series by calling 480-624-1202.
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Mixology 101 at Jade Bar There's a reason Jade Bar won Best Cocktail Class in the 2014 Best of Phoenix edition: they're constantly re-inventing what the classes will cover. While they're called Mixology 101 and did start just going over the basics one spirit at a time, the offering have progressed so you can keep coming back to Camelback Mountain's beautiful Sanctuary resort and progress your knowledge about cocktails every Saturday at 1 p.m. This October's line-up looks particularly great with herbs in cocktails on October 4, a culinary perspective to mixology on October 11, fall cocktails on October 18, and Halloween-inspired drinks on October 20. Classes are $30 for 3 or 4 cocktails and hands-on demonstration (a steal) and limited to 20 people. Reserve your spot by calling the Sanctuary at 480-948-2100.