We've got a big week ahead of us, fellow drinkers. Not only does this weekend mark the kickoff of the second annual Arizona Beer Week, but some geniuses got the bright idea to hold the first-ever Arizona Cocktail Week during the same period. We fear for our livers.
But, troopers that we are, we plan to make it to at least a few of Cocktail Week's best events. Here's where you'll find us during the spirited celebration.
Sunday, Feb. 19
Whiskey School: Bourbon
Old Town Whiskey
The patio at Old Town Whiskey becomes Bourbon County as drinkers discover everything they ever wanted to know about this classic American liquor.
The Take Over
Mabel's on Main
The crew of Tucson's Scott & Co. makes the trip north to invade Mabel's on Main, where they'll mix up the badass cocktails that have made the bar famous.
Monday, Feb. 20
Bloody Mary Bar
Take the edge off what's sure to be a rough morning by building your own Bloody Mary at the Hotel Valley Ho's Café Zuzu.
Garden to Glass
Hotel Valley Ho - Sands
"Garden to Glass" is a new movement in bartending that takes advantage of seasonal ingredients picked straight from the garden and dropped into the glass. A panel of bartenders, chefs and local farmers -- including mixologist and author Kim Haasarud, FAIR brandmaster Danny Ronen and local farmer Maya Dailey -- will discuss growing and making drinks with farm-fresh ingredients.
The First Official Imbibe n Dine
Cocktails by Todd Richman, Rich Heider and Tyson Buhler balance dishes like duck confit salad and rosemary roasted beef tenderloin at this food and cocktail pairing dinner held at Café Zuzu.
Tuesday, Feb. 21
Grand Tasting Arena
Hotel Valley Ho - Pool
Cocktail Week sponsors sample their wares on the pool deck of the Hotel Valley Ho, and there are sure to be some rare and unique libations to try.
How the West was Won, One Dram at a Time
Hotel Valley Ho - Sands
From shady Tombstone saloons to Tucson tiki drinks to burgeoning contemporary cocktail culture, this panel marks Arizona's Centennial with a look at cocktails in Arizona from the Wild West to today.
Last Slinger Standing Ultimate Shake Off
Red Revolver Lounge
It's a bartender battle! This tournament -style cocktail competition pits pairs of bartenders against each other in a fight to quickly create a drink using randomly selected base spirits and additional ingredients.
Thursday, Feb. 23
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Distrito Cocktail Dinner
The Saguaro Hotel @ Distrito
Milagro ambassador Gaston Martinez and mixologist Jason Asher will teach attendees how to make three tequila cocktails, which will be paired with three courses of Distrito's Mexican fare.
Saturday, Feb. 25
St. Germain's Bottoms Up Event
Culinary Drop Out
Celebrate the close of the cocktail week and the recovery of your booze-addled brain with a party -- what else? -- hosted by St. Germain and Young's Market.