If your drink of choice is a martini, margarita, or a cosmopolitan, you’re in for a treat. New Mexico is home to some top-notch cocktail bars, with expert mixologists and a memorable evening just waiting for you. These lounges have mastered the cocktail-making technique, from old-school to custom-crafted. Here are the 8 best cocktail bars in the state!
Sitting under a giant anaconda is not something most would do by choice, but the name-sake one here slithering across the ceiling is harmless … but not so the cocktails from the bar. Seasonal drinks, like a cucumber jalapeño or prickly pear margarita in the summertime, highlight the menu at this popular watering hole. Try a flirtini or a glass of sangria or a Taos Lighting Old Fashioned with a plate of trout tacos for a fun night out.
This is an old-school bar with bottles of whiskey, gin, vodka, tequila, rum, bourbon, ver-mouth, cognac plus all the mixers, as well as the garnishes to go with any cocktail lined up within easy reach of the bartender. Opened in the early 1970s, Evangelo’s is a city landmark with a history right out of an Anthony Quinn movie. The owner, a Greek im-migrant, is even featured on a USPS postage stamp. A tropical decor, more than 200 types of imported beer and a revolving door of live music keeps everyone here coming back. Or maybe it’s the ouzo!
The view is from the top … the rooftop at Hotel Andaluz. That’s where you can enjoy a delightful cocktail overlooking the lights of the city. The mixologist behind the bar keeps things lively, creating drinks with crazy names. Signature cocktails are unique — the Sandia Haze is old forester 100, averna amaro, carpano antica, mole bitters and hibiscus and clove. The Constant Gardener is a mix of boatinist gin, pamplemousse, celery bitters, grapefruit and rose cava. There are five more worth trying. Open every night; no cover charge.
An old hole-in-the-wall building on the main drag is home to a bar that has a little some-thing for everyone … of age, of course. Pool tables, shuffleboard, video games, cosmic bowling and straight-up solid drinks make this family-owned lounge a favorite local hangout. Happy hour, ladies night and special events with live music bring customers in seven nights a week.
Hank Williams, Sr. celebrated “Honky Tonkin” in his 1948 song. Grab a drink here and you might get talked into a little country two-stepping to some of his music. It’s a land-mark in town, home to locals and tourists out for an evening of country western music and a few libations. Bottles are shiny, glasses are lined up and ready to be filled and the barkeep is standing by ready to create some liquid refreshments, all you have to do is ask.
Margaritas in all flavors are the signature cocktail at this historic adobe inn. Prickly pear, blood orange, strawberry, hibiscus and raspberry transform this traditional drink into a refreshing taste sensation. Another favorite is the Iced Rum Chata with Fireball Whiskey—a horchata never tasted so good! In addition to hand-crafted cocktails, there’s a selection of local microbrews. Happy hour every day with yummy appetizers like twice-baked potatoes and the signature Sagebrush quesadilla.
Cocktails here are defined by the mixologists innovation and creativity. The house martini is a blend of Pinnacle blueberry vodka, Cointreau and fresh lime juice, shaken and served with a touch of sparkling wine. It’s sophisticated, just like the interior bar filled with lush furnishings and custom decor. A patio lounge is perfect for a warm evening outing. All cocktails are customized and highlight the vast selection of different types of alcohol on hand. Happy hour Monday through Friday.
The art of making an old-school mixed drink is alive and well here. This is the kind of place that if you go more than once, the bartender remembers your cocktail preference. The bar is fully loaded; you’d be hard-pressed to request something that couldn’t be made. The atmosphere is a little funky, a little divy, but it’s got a great friendly hangout vibe. Drink specials weekly, pool tournaments and a jammin’ jukebox—spend some time here and you’ll join in the chorus of, “Everybody Love’s Raymond’s!”