No, you’re not hallucinating—that is indeed a giant pallet of Las Vegas Distillery moonshine at Las Vegas and Henderson Costco locations. The discount giant purchased 60 cases each of the Nevada Moonshine ($19) and the distillery’s newly released Grandma’s Apple Pie Handmade Moonshine ($20) and if things go well (as things tend to do where high-proof spirits are concerned) they might expand the sale up to Northern Nevada. This would be a kind of homecoming for the distillery as so much of the raw ingredients hail from Winnemucca in the first place.
“We are very thankful for this fantastic opportunity!” distillery owner George Racz says. “The guys from Costco visited the distillery and they decided to support us! We hope the community will like it and buy it. We are now in their hands.” And if you like what you taste, call the distillery to sign up for Racz’ distillery school that launched November 2. The next class will be in session in February. “You can imagine, I am dancing and singing morning till night!” Yeah, well, moonshine’ll do that to you.
Vesper GM and property mixologist Chris Hopkins is departing the Cosmopolitan for Wynn-ier shores this month, accepting the property mixologist position at Wynn and Encore resorts vacated when Patricia Richards jumped over to represent the Bacardi portfolio nationwide. Hopkins was a Vesper bartender when the property opened in 2010, and succeeded opening GM Andrew Pollard when Pollard was scooped up by Wirtz Beverage Nevada in February 2012. So you see, this Aussie has a history of filling out big shoes, and he will no doubt make his mark.
Meanwhile, just down the hall at the Cosmo, the new menu rolled out October 25 in Chandelier’s 1.5 bar, inspired by the personal experiences of property mixologist Mariena Mercer, “from Thanksgiving at my Nana’s, to the smell of the campfire in Zion on a cold autumn night to the buttered popcorn on movie night in,” she says. Like all of Mercer’s menus, this one boasts 10 culinary-forward originals, now in the key of autumn to highlight fruits and vegetables that peak in the fall, such as the Smokey the Bear, Pioneer Woman and Film Noir. “I was inspired by dark spirits, autumnal flavors, lots of walnut, fig, maple and whiskey—slightly masculine.” By contrast, the Cat’s Cradle is feminine, with even the shape of the glass resembling the curves of a woman’s body. Grrrrowl!