Lobby Libations

5 cocktail recipes from Virginia’s most stylish hotel bars.

(Red Square Cocktail: photo by Sera Petras)

Virginia’s hotels are home to a delightful mix of craft cocktail bars where you’ll find expertly combined flavors, fresh ingredients, local spirits, and charming ambiance. We offer five recipes to inspire your adventures across the state—from the luxurious Raleigh Room at the Cavalier resort in Virginia Beach, to Marigold at Keswick Hall in wine country; and from the modern Lobby Bar at the Quirk—in Richmond—to the historic TAPS at The Georges in Lexington. And when in Bristol? Head to Lumac, the Bristol Hotel’s rooftop bar, where the mountain views are alive with the sound of bluegrass.


Red Square Cocktail

TAPS, The Georges, Lexington (TheGeorges.com)

  • 6 pink peppercorns
  • 1 strawberry
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 1/2 ounces tequila
  • 3/4 ounce Cointreau
  • 3/4 ounce lime juice
  • 3/4 ounce simple syrup
  • Angostura Bitters Mist

Muddle peppercorns and strawberry. Add remaining ingredients. Dry shake, then shake with ice. Strain into a glass. Mist with Angostura Bitters Mist on top.


Blackberry Lemon Pancake Toddy

(Photo by Sera Petras)

LUMAC ROOFTOP BAR, The Bristol Hotel, Bristol (BristolHotelVa.com)

  • 1/2 ounce maple syrup
  • 1/2 ounce blackberry jelly
  • 1/4 ounce concentrated lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 ounces Gentleman Jack whiskey (or your preferred whiskey)
  • 8 ounces hot water

Combine all ingredients in a glass and stir until dissolved. Garnish with lemon and blackberries.


Vintage Velvet

(Photo by Sera Petras)

THE LOBBY BAR, Quirk Hotel, Richmond (DestinationHotels.com/Quirk-Hotel)

  • 1 ounce gin
  • 1/4 ounce lemon juice
  • 1/2 ounce dry vermouth
  • 3/4 ounce Cr.me Violette
  • absinthe
  • Prosecco

Combine the first four ingredients. Rinse glass with absinthe. Serve over rocks and top with Prosecco. Garnish with a lemon twist.


Cavalier Honey Bramble

(Photo by Sera Petras)

RALEIGH ROOM, The Historic Cavalier Hotel, Virginia Beach (CavalierResortVB.com)

  • 4 ounces Fourth Handle Coastal American Gin
  • 2 ounces Cavalier Honey Simple Syrup
  • 1 ounce Creme de Mure
  • fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 fresh blackberries

Combine all contents in a shaker tin. Shake and strain over crushed ice. Garnish with whole blackberries and lemon peel.


Fennel Mezcalita

(Photo by Sera Petras)

MARIGOLD, Keswick Hall, Keswick (Keswick.com)

  • 1 1/2 ounces fennel-infused mezcal
  • 1 ounce tarragon syrup
  • 1/2 ounce St. Elder liqueur
  • 3/4 ounce lemon juice
  • 5 black peppercorns
  • 3 dashes cardamom/black pepper bitters
  • 1 pinch fennel pollen

Add first five ingredients to a tin with ice and shake well for 15 seconds. Strain into a rocks glass over large rocks. Dash bitters. Sprinkle with fennel pollen. Garnish with a fennel frond.

FOR THE FENNEL-INFUSED MEZCAL:

  • 5 ounces roughly chopped fennel bulb
  • 3 cups RosaLuna Mezcal

Pour mezcal over the fennel and agitate well. Allow to infuse for 36 hours. Strain.

FOR THE TARRAGON SYRUP:

  • 2 2/3 cups water
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar
  • 3 1/2 ounces stem-on tarragon

Bring water and sugar to a gentle boil. Pour over tarragon. Steep 25 minutes. Strain through a fine mesh chinois, pushing for total extraction.


This article originally appeared in the October 2021 issue.

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