Get Your Drink On

DrinkphotoWith our new Happy Hour Guarantee program it's no wonder we've got drinks on our mind. From Vodka cocktails to Candy cocktails we thought it was time to have a chat with Maureen Keefe, one of our beverage managers, to talk about all those glorious libations and our beverage program here at the M.

What's hot right now when it comes to the beverage world?

For us at the M it's all about our Candy Cocktails. We just introduced a new line of six cocktails in our Lobby Bar, M Bar, and Ravello Lounge and they've become our most popular drinks. They're fun - they taste delicious and have great names like Liquid Snickers. Plus, with the new Happy Hour 24/7 program they're a great price at just $5. A typical specialty cocktail can cost upwards for $10-$12-$15 so $5 is a bargain price.

On an industry level, there a lot of new trends that we're seeing like herb-infused cocktails, organic wines, food-beer pairings and mico-distilled/artisan liquor. When it comes to trends though ultimately the guests dictate what they like and want to see on the menu. Most people are very specific about how they like their cocktails, even the classics and we are always happy to customize cocktails.

What makes the beverage program here at the M unique?

For us, it's all about the personalized service. A cocktail is a cocktail and yes there are variations of it at different places and everyone has their signature drink, but at the end of the day, the thing that separates the M from anywhere else is our service. Our bartenders will know your name and remember what you like to drink.

CandyCocktailDrinkMenuHow often do we change our drink menu?

We try to keep our drink menus fresh and typically change out drinks every six months or so. We might not change the entire menu, but we continually add new drinks. We just added six exciting new draught beers at 32 Draft Bar and of course the Candy Cocktails are all new too.

Tell us more about the Candy Cocktails. Is there actual candy in them?

More like candy on them. The majority of the cocktails are garnished with candy and with one of the cocktails, our Cotton Candy Cocktail, we actually drop cotton candy in it.

There are six cocktails that make up the Candy selection:

  • Liquid Snickers: Stoli Vanil, Godiva Chocolate Liqueur, Castries Peanut Rum, Bailey's Irish Cream, Pinnacle Whipped Cream Vodka, garnished with a Snickers
  • Peanut Butter Cup Martini: Castries Peanut Rum, Godiva Chocolate Liqueur, Pinnacle Whipped Cream Vodka, garnished with a peanut butter cup
  • Almond Joy: Amaretto, Godiva Chocolate Liqueur, Malibu Rum, Pinnacle Whipped Cream Vodka
  • Milky Way Martini: Stoli Vanil, Godiva Chocolate Liqueur, Bailey's Irish Cream, Butterscotch Liqueur, Splash of Cream
  • Jelly Bean: Blackberry Brandy, Anisette
  • Cotton Candy Martini: Three Olives Bubble Vodka, Amaretto, Peach Schnapps, Cranberry Juice, Sour and Sprite, garnished with cotton candy

What is the process for creating a new drink?

We're open to lots of ideas when it comes to creating new drinks. Ideas come from our bartenders, our mixologists and our entire beverage team. We test out new ideas and once we've narrowed down the ones we taste test them with our team.

Our most popular cocktail, the M Fantasy.

The M Fantasy. M's most popular specialty cocktail.

That sounds like quite the good time.

It absolutely is, but it's also real work. We want to create the best drinks that we can and bring those to the guests. We might love them, but we also have to think about what our guests will like and what will appeal the most to them.

How many bartenders does the M currently have?

We have approximately 60 bartenders at the M that are spread among our five bars and now the pool.

What drink is the #1 seller at the M? Since we opened our #1 seller is the M Fantasy. It has Stoli Blueberi Vodka, Silk Road Plum Sake and muddled blueberries.

We have to ask. What's your favorite drink?

I can't pick a favorite but I can pick three favorites. My favorite draught beer is Smithwicks, we just added it to 32 Draft Bar. I would have to say my favorite cocktail is the Almond Joy Candy cocktail. I also really enjoy tasting a variety of red wines from our Enomatic machines at Hostile Grape.