Behind the Bar Snap Shot

Presidential Cocktails on the Las Vegas Strip

The Franklin offers Las Vegas-style cocktails with a side of American history.

Intimacy is a common language in Las Vegas, at least behind closed hotel bedrooms.

It’s rare, though, to experience public peace and quiet in Sin City. Franklin, the brand-new bar in the 1,117-room Delano, aims to bring people closer—in a less conventionally Vegas way.

Greet ’n’ Meet

Located at a discrete distance from the clinking of the slot machines, the Franklin welcomes its guests with conversation cards. The cards invite them to ponder questions such as “If you had a superpower what would it be?”

Four punches are served on rotation from oversized bowls to get guests chatting and interacting. All of this, according to director of beverage Dennis Lofland, helps bar goers visiting for business (or pleasure) from all around the world feel at ease and maybe get to know each other. The bar is also planning some distinctly un-Vegas extracurricular activities, including a board game night to add to the cozy local bar vibe, and an arcade game evening featuring classics like Ms. Pac-Man.

Service, First

Ever try to order a decent cocktail while gambling? No mean feat. At Franklin, the cocktails are prepared with care and served hospitably. All staff members take the BarSmarts training program, so, “You are not going to get your typical casino experience,” says Lofland.

Franklin’s presidential cocktails: The Delano Daiquiri and The New Deal.

Drunk History

You name a hotel and bar after the 32nd President of the United States, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and history is bound to play its part. So, at Franklin, many of the cocktails have names connected to American chronology.

The cognac-based The New Deal is sweetened with emulsified Bonne Maman Plum Mirabelle marmalade. The Delano Daiquiri uses Bacardi 1909 Heritage Rum. The Jefferson Library is a beer cocktail, served in a tall, slim glass. It undergoes a chemical reaction when Scottish Innis & Gunn Porter reacts with lemon juice and Angostura, creating ribbons of effervescence in the glass.

Liza B. Zimmerman has been writing and consulting about drinks for two decades. She is the principal of the San Francisco–based Liza the Wine Chick consulting firm and regularly contributes to publications such as Wine Business Monthly, DrinkUpNY and the SOMM Journal.