Glenfiddich brand ambassador Jennifer Wren is an encyclopedia of whisky facts — and she’s also fun to drink with — so we invited her to create the ultimate brown-booze agenda for a night out in Las Vegas. Here are six bars where the whisky drinking is sublime from downtown chic to Strip luxury.
Stop 1: The Local
Tucked inside a shipping container in downtown Las Vegas’ Container Park, Oak & Ivy only has a handful of seats, but the whiskey offerings are plentiful, including a dedicated list of cocktails meant to promote the virtues of the juicy, golden liquid. Triple-malt Monkey Shoulder served in an old-fashioned glass with barbecue seasonings and a hint of smoke eases the palate into what’s to come.
Stop 2: The Winner
Recently awarded best American high-volume bar at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans, Herbs & Rye is a great place to drink, no matter the spirit you fancy. And while the cocktails are all fabulous, such as the famous Ramos gin fizz, now’s the time to order up a few types of Glenfiddich neat as well. This bar has the 12-, 15- and 21-year varieties on deck. Wren describes the bartenders here as “artists and incredible beings.”
Stop 3: The Old School
Delmonico Steakhouse in Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino offers a stunning collection of more than 700 selections of whiskies from nine countries inside its acclaimed “Book.” The program is managed by one of Las Vegas’ most renowned bartenders, Juyoung Kang, who adds four whisky cocktails to two mainstays on her new menu. This is the spot where the Glenfiddich master blender David Stewart has held pairing and educational dinners.
Stop 4: The Accessory
Casa Fuente in The Forum Shops at Caesars provides the ideal environment for enjoying one of whisky’s greatest accompaniments: a cigar. A landmark of sorts, it is the first establishment in North America to select and import its own barrel of Kavalan Sherry Cask Strength Whiskey from Taiwan, and at more than 40 percent ABV, it is not for the faint of taste. Experts recommend adding a few dashes of water to make it more drinkable.
Stop 5: The Flight
Bound in The Cromwell, a Forbes Travel Guide Recommended hotel, is the quintessential lobby bar, Bound. An ideal meeting locale, it invites you to grab a table and stay a while, do business, make new friends and try some superb whisky. Wren suggests ordering Glenfiddich 15 Year, Glenmorangie 12 Year, the Macallan Rare Cask and the Balvenie 30. If consumed in that order, you will taste a progression of flavor resulting from the range of techniques that starts with the Solera aging system and ends with cask-finished aging.
Stop 6: The Finishing Touch
After this aggressive schedule, make a last stop at Bardot Brasserie in Four-Star ARIA Resort and Casino to satiate the hunger induced by all of the libations. Don’t worry — ARIA and Cromwell are only separated by a four-minute drive. Steak tartare, truffle fries and briny, buttery mussels are the perfect nibbles to go along with the extremely rare Booker’s Rye. There’s nothing better than a taste of pure liquid luxury to complete an evening of decadence.