The creative juices are always flowing at 1886, the hidden bar inside Pasadena’s The Raymond. The cocktail hangout’s skilled crew, led by head barman Brady Wiese, creates a new list of drinks every season and there most recent line-up is intended to provide cooling relief from the hottest days of summer.
We’ve highlighted five of the crazier cocktails out of the ten or so on the summer menu, each created in collaboration with different members of the 1886 staff, chefs from The Raymond, or local bartenders like Kelly O’Hare and Jesse Phillips of Sonny’s Hideaway. As you’d expect, each has a pretty entertaining story:
Blue Sky: The 1886 crew almost called this Breaking Bad-inspired drink “The Walter White,” but decided to name it after the bright blue citrus-and-sugar candy crystals on top instead. It’s made with mezcal, tequila, watermelon juice, and fiery habanero-infused vanilla syrup. Oh, and it’s served on a glass mirror, naturally.
Savory Piña Colada: This velvety concotion, co-created by The Raymond sous chef Chris Hoey, might remind you of an Indian lassi more than a tropical slushie. It’s made with pistachio-infused rum and low-yogurt, but don’t worry it still has the pineapple garnish on top.
Frozen Hot Chocolate: Move over, Serendipity. This icy, dessert cocktail is based on a recipe for champurrado, a type of Mexican hot chocolate made with dark chocolate, unrefined sugar, milk, star anise, vanilla, and cinnamon. 1886’s verison is spiked with reposado tequila and topped with freshly whipped cream.
Age of Piracy: An ode to classic tiki cocktails, this potent refresher riffs on The Zombie, mixing pineapple, lime, grapefruit, cinnamon syrup, and spiced vanilla liqueur with the unexpected combo of aged rum and single malt Scotch. It’s a doozy.
Tale of Two Cities: Inspired by a former 1886 bartender who now slings drinks in New South Wales, this two-for-one cocktail is made with rum, apple brandy, and eucalyptus leaves. It’s split and served in two different glasses: one up in a coupe glass and the other on the rocks in an Old Fashioned glass.
36 Chambers: We like smoky drinks, but this cocktail is on a whole other level. This complex concoction combines peated Hakushu Japanese whisky, yellow Chartreuse, Averna Amaro and a house-made tobacco tincture. It’s then garnished with a strip of Tibetan rope incense wrapped around the frozen glass and set alight. Go ahead, take a drag.
1886 at The Raymond, 1250 S. Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena, 626-441-3136