These four creative cocktails from Northern Michigan restaurants provide quick, easy meet-up opportunities with friends—even in the December rush. Get out to our favorites in Charlevoix, Traverse City and beyond.
Anticipating the festive essence of December drinking, we’ve trolled a few of Northern Michigan’s best barrooms to find creative libations built around small-batch Michigan booze.
Traverse City Cosmo, Stafford’s Weathervane
106 Pine River Lane, Charlevoix
The official pink drink of girls behaving badly, the classic Cosmopolitan takes on a little Northern Michigan orchard sweetness from True North Cherry Vodka shaken ice cold with triple sec and a splash of cranberry.
Lawrence-75, Barrel Back
04069 North M-75, Walloon Lake
Northern Michigan’s fizz doctor, Larry Mawby, is immortalized in this take on the French-75, where his celebrated brut rosé “Sex” is splashed over Bombay gin, lemon juice and simple syrup and garnished with a lime.
Michigan Mary, South American Grille & Wine Bar
3600 Village Harbor Dr, Bay Harbor
This pure Northern Michigan breakfast drink melds McClure’s Bloody Mary Mix and pickles with award-winning Valentine vodka and locally smoked Plath’s bacon for a spicy, lycopene-rich blast.
The Perfect Italian, Trattoria Stella
1200 West 11th Street, Traverse City
Valentine’s barrel-aged Old Tom Gin gets stirred with equal parts of exquisite Contratto sweet & dry vermouth and an orange twist in a complex coalescing of flavors that forever squashes the martini-or-manhattan conundrum.