San Diegans raise a glass with a variety of specialty cocktails.
From James Bond’s “shaken not stirred” ethos to the electric pink Cosmopolitans of the Sex and the City ladies, the martini has enjoyed a continued success in the cocktail world, thanks to its chic appearance, sophistication and (let’s be honest) stiff character.
It’s no wonder there’s a saying, “one martini, two martini, three martini, floor.” Whether you are channeling 007, Carrie, Miranda, Samantha, Charlotte, or your own martini personality, dress the part and go out for this year’s National Martini Day on Tuesday, June 19.
PACIFIC has rounded up some of the most delicious options for the festivities. Just keep your eye on the moving floor.
The Westgate Hotel
Celebrate the holiday in old-fashioned style with a cocktail bar cart that shakes and stirs its way through the Grand Lobby from 3-6 p.m. After a martini (or two), head over to the Plaza Bar for appetizers and entrees.
1055 Second Ave., downtown, 619.238.1818, westgatehotel.com
With a spanking new martini menu that includes five full time offerings, Prep Kitchen speaks to every taste bud this holiday. Grab some friends and try the Bond Martini, with vodka, gin, orange bitters and French Sauternes; the decadent and dessert-y Espresso Martini, with vodka, Kahlua, Frangelico, vanilla, chocolate; and espresso; or the Always a Cosmo, with house infused Mandarin vodka, blood orange and fresh citrus. The martini menu is available at each of Prep Kitchen’s.
Little Italy: 1660 India St., 619.398.8383; 1201 Camino Del Mar, 858.792.7737; La Jolla: 7556 Fay Ave., 858.875.7737; San Marcos: 250 N. City Dr., 760.798.8778, prepkitchenlittleitaly.com
A clever and adorable twist on the standard Cosmopolitan, Café 21’s version uses vodka, lemon, simple syrup, fresh fruit puree and is topped with... cotton candy. If these had been served to the Sex & the City gals, it would have been a national sensation. Available at the downtown location only.
802 Fifth Ave., Gaslamp, 619.795.0721, cafe-21.com
Morton’s The Steakhouse
In this impressive tribute to the classic cocktail, Martini lovers choose from seven different types of gin or 20 different types of vodka to create a signature Mortini. Each cocktail comes with a homemade blue cheese-stuffed olive to munch on. Head there for Power Hour from 5-6:30 p.m. for a special $9 Mortini and $6-7 bar bites.
285 J St., Gaslamp, 619.696.3369, mortons.com
Mezé Greek Fusion
Go Greek this holiday with the Martini ala Greca, made with olive oil-washed vodka, secco vermouth, basil, saline and garnished with a feta cheese stuffed olive.
345 Sixth Ave., Gaslamp, 619.550.1600, gaslampmeze.com
Say “Oui, s’il vous plait” to Bleu Bohéme’s signature basil martini, made with French vodka, basil and citrus or their French martini with vodka, pineapple juice and crème de cassis.
4090 Adams Ave., Kensington, 619.255.4167, bleuboheme.com
Fans of Rizzo and the Pink Ladies of Grease will be singing movie tunes while sipping their signature martini, The Pink Lady. Crafted with Belvedere vodka, basil, watermelon, sugar and lemon juice, this refreshing treat will be offered at all of the property bars, La Sala Lounge, poolside bar, THE MED and Café La Rue.
1132 Prospect St., La Jolla, 858.454.0771, lavalencia.com
Head to La Jolla for this perfectly San Diegan cocktail: It’s Noon Somewhere. Crafted with vodka, elderflower liqueur, ruby red grapefruit juice, fresh lime juice, housemade habanero syrup and a dash of rhubarb bitters, this martini provides a delicious excuse to keep the holiday spicy.
6830 La Jolla Blvd., La Jolla, 858.750.2056, nautilustavern.com
Herb & Wood
Inspired by Audrey Saunders’ Dreamy Dorini Smoking Martini, bartender Meghan Balser created the Vodka & Lavender crafted with local You & Yours vodka, Gin Mare, lavender-infused Aperitivo Bianco and a touch of Japanese Whiskey.
2210 Kettner Blvd., Little Italy, 619.955.8495, herbandwood.com
Greystone Prime Steakhouse & Seafood
This historic steakhouse locale offers a twist on the traditional with the Caper Martini, made with Ketel One vodka, salty caper brine and caper berries.
658 Fifth Ave., downtown, 619.232.0225, greystonesteakhouse.com
Del Sur Mexican Cantina
Nothing says summer like a Watermelon Basil Martini, a refreshing combination of 1800 reposado tequila, watermelon juice, lime and basil syrup.
2310 30th St., South Park, 619.501.0643, delsurmexicancantina.com
Madison on Park
Bar Manager Danny Kuehner takes on the martini with his floral and refreshing Belle Epoque, with local Cutwater Hibiscus Vodka, pomegranate nectar, lemon and Prosecco.
4622 Park Blvd., University Heights, 619.269.6566, madisononpark.com
Head across the bridge to Coronado for the Primavera martini, made with Ketel One vodka, lime juice, muddled basil, cucumber and mint or the Lavender Kiss martini, with Stoli vodka, fresh lemon, lavender-infused simple syrup and mint.
932 Orange Ave., Coronado, 619.435.0454, primavera1st.com
Celebrate the holiday with a variety of martinis during the Admiral’s Hour from 5-6 p.m. and again from 9 p.m. to close. Try the signature Oceanaire 2.0 made with Havana Club Añejo Blanco rum, Domaine de Canton ginger liqueur, fresh lime juice, banana syrup, and Senior & Co. Genuine Blue Curaçao; the Camarita made with Camarena Silver Tequila, Patron Citronge and fresh lime juice; or the James Bond Martini, a combination of New Amsterdam Gin and Vodka with a half-measure of Lillet Blanc (all $8 during Admiral’s Hour).
400 J St., Gaslamp, 619.858.2277, theoceanaire.com