More on this in a moment.
Before I go into detail about this awesome restaurant and bar I recommend following Hope.
- LADIES - Her eye for fashion is on point! On two separate occasions, a woman stopped us while we were out and gave compliments on her dress. That means at least 5 more had similar thoughts, but just didn't say anything.
- FELLAS - She knows ALL the good restaurants. Tired of going to the same places with your lady? She gave me the perfect idea for a date within 30 minutes of chatting.
- EVERYONE - Her story is inspirational. After getting burnt out from running her online boutique, she refocused her efforts to lifestyle marketing and has since found success once more. As awesome as she is, Hope is no different than you and I. She's approachable and super cool.
For more outfit inspirations, info about eateries, and random adventures around Phoenix, especially in the West Valley, visit HopesHabit.com and show her some LxVE.
Catching Up With An Old Friend At Little Rituals
I turned 30 then relocated to Phoenix after living in Atlanta for 12 years. I also just found out that celebrating your #dirty30 in Arizona was a thing... who knew!? I guess that means I have a reason to keep exploring and sharing my experiences.
Since I've been back, I've been intentional about building relationships with people in my field. Naturally, when the chance to catch up at a place Hope hadn't been to yet came about I had to jump at the opportunity. We landed at LIttle Rituals because of their reputation for innovative cocktails, and they did not disappoint.
When you enter, you'll be pleasantly surprised by the view of Talking Stick Arena and surrounding destinations. Located on the 4th floor of the Marriott downtown, The restaurant/bar is the perfect place to grab drinks before a night on the town, or for a nightcap before retiring for the evening.
The atmosphere screams sophisticated casual. I fit right in wearing jeans and a nice T-Shirt but could have been dressed up in a blazer or dressed down in cargos and still felt comfortable. The staff is friendly and although I only ordered wings, their flavor was amazing. I stole several of Hope's fries and they were good too. I know wings and fries sounds extra basic, but trust me, it wasn't.
Craft Cocktails Created By Chanel
I love asking the staff what they recommend at restaurants I'm visiting for the first time. Both the host and our server adamantly suggested the Big City Nights, a carefully crafted cocktail made from Blackberry Botanist Gin, Suze, Dolin dry vermouth, herbed cinnamon syrup, lemon and egg whites topped with their signature collage of Phoenix printed on a rice paper wafer. I had never heard of any of these ingredients. Still, I was so enamored by the description that I completely forgot that I'm not a fan of gin.
This drink, however, was delicious!
How could this alcohol I despise also be the main ingredient of a drink I loved? Enter Chanel. I had the chance to meet the famed bartender who made my drink and immediately put her skills to the test. I shared my aversion for gin and she protested that she could sway my opinion.
Typically, I'm a dirty martini guy so she sampled my palette with the Session Martini, Little Rituals' twist on my go-to but with gin. As expected, I was not feeling it. She smiled then disappeared to create something "off the cuff." When she reemerged, she had another martini looking drink in-hand and placed it in front of me. After stressing that I taste it before she shared her recipe, I raised my glass and took a sip. It was excellent!
Finally, she revealed that she mixed Ford's Gin, a floral and citrusy tasting gin distilled in London, Dolin Blanc Vermouth, red currant cordial, along with egg whites to give it a frothy topping. Looking back, I wish she would have named it so we could make a case for adding it to the menu. It was that good.
Turns out Chanel is one half of the Barbeez Podcast, a show that highlights bartenders and other industry professionals, shares crazy stories that could only be told by a bartender and discusses how to move the industry forward. You can connect with her at barbeez.com and listen to her show on your favorite podcast streaming app.
Here's to your new favorite bar, bartender, and podcast! Cheers!