Keeping your cool is understandably a challenge while such childhood icons as Stevie Wonder, Duran Duran and Snoop Dogg—depending on when you were born—perform right in front of you. The fact that the Life Is Beautiful festival landed in September this year will keep things toasty, as well. However, there is a plan in place to keep you fresh, courtesy of Wirtz Beverage Nevada: cocktails.
The honor of having the official festival cocktail goes once again to Ketel One with a snappy twist on the now-ubiquitous Moscow Mule (seriously, even your parents drink them). The LIB Dutch Mule combines Ketel One Citroen, Angostura bitters and lime juice over crushed ice with a little lime and mint.
From Jack Daniel’s and first-time Life Is Beautiful participant Milagro Tequila come a duo of warm-weather-friendly sippers. The Peach Dandy pairs Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel with Giffard peach liqueur, fresh lemon juice, house-made mint syrup and bitters. The Piña Verde mixes Milagro silver with fresh lime and pineapple juices, that same house-made mint syrup and a little green Tabasco.
Bringing back a modern classic from his 2012 portfolio, Wirtz beverage development specialist Andrew Pollard has revived The Old Country (pictured above), which pays homage to Italian liquors of the 18th and 19th centuries. The cocktail from the now-shuttered Sirio in Aria mingles Carpano Antica Formula Vermouth, Fernet-Branca, Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur and two kinds of bitters, served over a large ice cube with an amarena cherry.
And those are just four of the 25 cocktails available. So, it’s safe to say this is not your parents’ concession lineup. But we think they’d like it, too.
LIB Dutch Mule
In a mixing glass, combine 2 ounces Ketel One Citroen Vodka, 2-3 dashes Angostura Aromatic Bitters and ½ ounce fresh lime juice. Add ice, cover, shake and strain into a copper mug filled with crushed ice. Fill with Barritt’s Ginger Beer and garnish with a sprig of fresh mint and a lime wheel.
In a mixing glass, combine 1½ Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel Tennessee Whiskey, ½ ounce Giffard Peche de Vigne, 1 ounce fresh lemon juice, 1 ounce house-made mint syrup and 3-4 dashes Angostura Aromatic Bitters. Add ice, cover, shake and strain over fresh ice into a mason jar. Garnish with a sprig of fresh mint and a lemon wheel.
In a mixing glass, combine 2 ounces Milagro Silver Tequila, 1 ounce fresh lime juice, 1 ounce house-made mint syrup, 1 ounce fresh pressed pineapple juice and 2-3 dashes green Tabasco. Add ice, cover, shake and strain over a mason jar of fresh ice. Garnish with pineapple “ears” (leaves) and a tajin-seasoned lime wheel.
The Old Country
In a mixing glass, combine 2 ounces Carpano Antica Formula Vermouth, 1 ounce Fernet-Branca, ½ ounce Solerno Blood Orange Liqueur, 2 dashes Angostura Aromatic Bitters and 2 dashes Regan’s No. 6 Bitters. Add ice, stir gently 15-20 rotations and strain over a large-format ice cube in a bucket glass. Garnish with an orange twist and a Filthy amarena cherry on a pick.