Craft cocktails are important and the best Eugene cocktails can be the key to a perfect meal, or take the edge off the work week with a close friend by your side. Whatever the occasion, the cocktail needs to be soundly pleasing, inventive, and made with authentic craft spirits and botanicals. These three Eugene restaurants personify the city’s cocktail evolution.
Party Bar – Downtown
Party Bar partner/owners Mark Kosmicki (at the bar) and Tiffany Norton (in the kitchen) entice imbibers with some of the best casual, inventive bites and drinks in town. Their local, organic focus results in masterful cocktails, adding interest to the downtown nightlife. Situated in the Broadway corridor, Party Bar is the ideal spot to grab some nosh paired with cocktails. Try a refreshing blend of Tanqueray gin, fresh mint, lemon and lime, orange juices, topped off with Reed’s Ginger Brew–sure to quench your thirst.
The menu of comfort bar food changes seasonally so consider repeat visits for a year-round experience of Chef Norton’s breadth of cooking wisdom. At this writing, choices include four varieties of oysters, a filling Oregon Albacore Tuna Tostada, fun Gnocchi Tots, and desserts like Basque Cheesecake, a Honey Chess Pie…and more. Be sure to leave time to peruse the food lover’s shelves of gourmet pantry staples at the adjacent Party Market & Wine.
Agate Alley Bistro – Campus
Looking for a spot serving up well-crafted bistro-style meals as well as unique and innovative cocktails? Agate Alley Bistro is your ticket. If you’re dining at Agate, get the Agate Lemonade: Absolute Citron, ginger syrup, lemon juice, fresh and juicy pomegranate and bubbly soda. Pair it with The Agate Alley Burger, a hefty 1/3 lb of organic spiced rubbed beef nestled in a soft brioche bun.
If the budget-friendly Taco Tuesday at Agate Alley Bistro is your gig, no pairing will do better than a tart-sweet and herbaceous Marionberry Mint Margarita, Sauza silver tequila, triple sec, house-made sour with a marionberry and fresh mint puree.
The Vintage – Downtown
Housed in a quaint Victorian on the edge of downtown Eugene since 2006, The Vintage location is somewhat of a secret to many but it’s no secret The Vintage cocktails have a cult following. Try Winter 75: an effervescence of Wild Roots cranberry vodka, ginger liquor, and lemon topped off with bubbly. Or another seasonal cocktail, Apple-Sauced: Drambuie, apple brandy, apple pear puree, orange bitters and lemon.
Pair your cocktail with a selection from the crepes and fondue-focused menu, what locals and tourists flock to the Vintage for. Each season you’ll find a handful of changing specials, such as Swedish Meatballs over mashed potatoes with Lingonberry gravy, a robust Fall Harvester Salad packed with local farm to table ingredients, and Red Velvet Crepes. No empty stomachs at evening’s end.
More Eugene eat and drink spots:
10 Best Downtown Breweries in Eugene, Oregon
4 Best Italian Restaurants in Eugene Are Old World Authentic
Eugene’s Blair Boulevard Restaurants Create Culinary Adventure