Tired of being your own bartender during this long pandemic? Want to support a local cocktail bar from the comfort of your couch? The River City offers plenty of portable options to take home. Pick up a to-go cocktail or three, fire up the jazz on the record player, and imagine you’re in a favorite neighborhood haunt.
For a boatload of booze
For the ideal combination of quality and quantity, call ahead to ask the bartenders to prepare a liter of one of the Southtown spot’s high-octane concoctions, such as the smooth Bourb Reynolds (bourbon, Cynar, cherry Heering, and ginger syrup). The liters can be pricey, but half sizes are also available.
For a cocktail supporting a cause
The Cherrity Bar
Though its donation model has changed during the pandemic, this East Side hang still finds ways to give back. Order a specialty cocktail, and the bar will donate $1 to the charity of the month. Or choose a classic concoction (we like the Ward 8, a variation on the whiskey sour), and fill in the donation line on your check.
For a meal and a marg
The Esquire Tavern
This River Walk mainstay recently reopened for dining and curbside pickup. The carryout drinks are served in plastic cups, which belie their top-notch contents. Order online and throw in some food: pair a perfectly tart frozen margarita with the Big Red empanada.
For a DIY concoction
Dorćol Distilling + Brewing Company
Dorćol, the makers of Kinsman Rakia and HighWheel beer, is also a popular cocktail bar and patio where bartenders sling drinks incorporating the brand’s spirits (they also serve beer, for the non-cocktail set). For a do-it-yourself cocktail, pick up one of the bottled infusions of its award-winning apricot brandy—try the Day n’ Night, a strawberry, habanero, and lemon blend; top it with ginger beer, for a spicy treat.
For a botanical treat
The Good Kind
This green oasis in Southtown, known for using local ingredients whenever possible and for its array of fresh smoothies and cold-pressed juices, has a curated menu of takeout drinks, most of which feature those fruits and veggies. Try the turmeric and pineapple concoction with gin or a hibiscus-lime margarita, and tell yourself you’re starting a cleanse.
This article originally appeared in the February 2021 issue of Texas Monthly with the headline “Takeout Tipples.” Subscribe today.