Anytime you visit Miami, South Beach is always an area of the city that is a must-visit, with beautiful beaches, sexy people, and a nightlife scene that is one of a kind. On my recent trip to the area, I had a chance to check out one of South Beach’s newest places to hang out, Craft Social Club.
I would describe it as a modern-day speakeasy with navy leather seating, a long L-shaped bar with views of the open-air cocktail kitchen, and elegant greenery hanging from the ceiling. Owners L.P. Steele and R.T. Murphy are putting the artistry and craftsmanship back into cocktails and make no mistake, Craft Social Club is not a nightclub, but instead is a cocktail club highlighting premium spirits combined with fresh ingredients that have been expertly created by its bartenders.
Oh, and these definitely aren’t your run-of-the-mill cocktails; instead, try the N.W.A. (Negroni with Attitude), made with Beet-Washed Bombay Sapphire Gin, Gran Classico bitter, Cocchi Americano Rose, and Orange Oil, or Weekend at Bernie’s, made with pineapple-infused Bacardi 8, lime, and Simple Syrup.
Taking you away from traditional bottle service, Craft Social Club features cocktail suites where each bottle purchase is accompanied by artisanal sodas, house-made mixers, and garnish presentations, allowing you and your guests to prepare a cocktail right at your table. Each suite has its own built-in bar giving you an experience unlike anything I’ve ever seen.
In addition to the cocktail suites, Craft Social Club also imparts the “Minute Mixology” method through an in-house “batching” process where they prepare large quantities of each cocktail daily. So when you order a drink, the bartenders are quickly able to add your spirit of choice with the garnish, which cuts down your wait time, giving you more time to socialize. There are also “on tap” cocktails which includes the spirit, making for even faster service.
Some of my favorite cocktails of the evening included Teddy’s KGB’S Mule, made with Ketel One Vodka, lime, ginger-citrus Oleo and Soda, and The Swedish Chef, made with Rhubarb-infused Absolut Elyx, pimms, lemon, mint-cucumber syrup, and ginger beer. Craft Social Club has a winning combination, bringing craft cocktails back to the forefront with classic hip-hop and R&B music, in an intimate social setting, making for one great night on South Beach. I can’t wait to return.
Craft Social Club
100 Collins Avenue
Miami Beach, FL
*Photo credit Douglas Viosin