6 Iconic San Francisco Cocktails

San Francisco

From the Martini to the Irish Coffee, San Francisco plays home to a rich cocktail history. The City By the Bay, in many ways, has been the torch bearer for the Western U.S. when it comes to mixology culture. Gold miners, journalists, and even Mark Twain have contributed to San Francisco’s fame within the cocktail scene.

Here are San Francisco’s most iconic cocktails:




  • 3 oz The Botanist (don’t skimp)
  • Hint of Vermouth (skimp, maybe skip)
  • 3 Castelvetrano Olives (Or lemon peel)

Shake the gin and maybe one single solitary drop of the driest vermouth on the planet in a martini shaker until the metal is unbearably cold. Lace the Castelvetrano olives on a toothpick while moist and glistening with brine and mount them happily on their glass throne—or peel a slice of lemon rind. Strain into a martini glass ice-cold.

Make The Perfect Martini

Pisco Punch

pisco punch


  • 2 oz BarSol Primero pisco
  • 2 oz Dole pineapple juice
  • 1 oz Fresh lime juice
  • 1 oz Simple syrup
  • Pineapple chunks
  • Garnish: Cherry

Add all the ingredients to a cocktail shaker and fill with ice. Shake well and strain into a white wine glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish with pineapple chunks and a cherry.

Irish Coffee (via Jameson)

Irish coffee


  • 1/3 parts Demerara and Muscovado sugar syrup
  • 1 part Jameson 
  • 1 part lightly whipped double cream
  • 3 parts medium roasted espresso coffee
  • 1 vanilla pod or cinnamon for garnish
  • Fresh grated nutmeg

Dissolve 2 parts Demerara sugar and 1 part Muscovado sugar in 3 parts of boiling water for the syrup. Stir sugar syrup into Jameson in a warmed glass. Whip chilled double cream lightly until it starts to stiffen. Brew a shot of coffee into the glass from your espresso machine. Reload and brew in a second shot. Pour the whipped cream into the coffee over the back of a spoon so it floats on top. Garnish with a trimmed vanilla pod or a stick of cinnamon and dust with a grating of fresh nutmeg.

Cable Car

Cable Car Cocktail


  • 1/2 tsp Ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 1 Lemon wedge
  • 1 1/2 oz Spiced rum
  • 3/4 oz Marie Brizard Orange Curaçao
  • 1/2 oz Simple syrup (one part sugar, one part water)
  • 1 oz Lemon juice
  • Garnish: 1 None Orange spiral

Stir together the cinnamon and sugar in a wide-mouthed bowl or on a saucer. Rub the rim of a chilled cocktail glass with the lemon wedge and dip in the cinnamon-sugar mixture to coat. Set aside.Add the remaining ingredients to a shaker and fill with ice. Shake, and strain into the prepared glass and garnish with an orange spiral.

California Milk Punch

milk punch


  • 4 cups California whole milk 
  • 1 cup California heavy cream 
  • 1 1/2 cups Kentucky straight bourbon 
  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar 
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup 
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract 
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped 
  • 1-2 handfuls ice cubes 
  • Crushed ice to fill glasses 
  • Freshly grated nutmeg for garnish

Add milk, heavy cream, bourbon, powdered sugar, maple syrup, vanilla extract, vanilla bean seeds and ice to a blender. Blend until ice is incorporated and the milk punch is frothy, approximately 20-30 seconds. Pour milk punch into punch glasses filled half way with crushed ice. Top with freshly grated nutmeg.

Mai Tai

Mai Tai


  • 1 1/2 oz White rum
  • 3/4 oz Orange curaçao
  • 3/4 oz Fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz Orgeat
  • 1/2 oz Dark rum
  • Garnish: Lime wheel
  • Garnish: Mint sprig

Add the white rum, curaçao, juice and orgeat into a shaker with crushed ice and shake lightly (about 3 seconds). Pour into a double Old Fashioned glass. Float the dark rum over top. Garnish with a lime wheel and mint sprig.