When new owner Don Dugan bought Dizzy’s Bistro earlier this year it was due to how well ran the restaurant was walking in. The food was top-notch and the service was superb. Four months later everything is moving along just the same as it always was, and that is a good thing for a place that has thrived for 20+ years.
If there was one area that could use a little more attention it would be the bar program, and it is indeed the only adjustments Dugan made. He brought Alex Horvath over from Table 28 to manage Dizzy’s bar and rework the cocktail and wine lineup. The new wine list is expanded with many more by the glass options in both reds, whites, and rose. On the cocktail side, he brought in a nearly wholesale change showing the same talent he showed previously behind the bar.
The one holdover is the signature Dizzy’s Punch (in the throat). This cocktail is updated with house-made grenadine, orgeat, and a splash of banana liqueur to go along with the coconut rum, pineapple juice, and dark rum. It gives it an even stronger tiki profile than before and is a nice update to the classic.
“I really wanted to build a menu that both tied in elements of the restaurant and catered to the people coming in to visit the city,” Horvath says. “Bringing back an updated version of the signature cocktail was key. Then I wanted to tie in the feel of the restaurant with a lavender heavy cocktail in the Flowers of Evil. Finally I wanted to wrap things up with some fun items.”
The Flowers of Evil do a great job capturing the spirit of the place with a lavender-infused Devils River Rye whiskey, genepy, lemon, applewood smoked salt solution, and a splash of soda water. It is floral with a small salty finish. It is kept light and delicate with eggwhites shaken in.
It doesn’t take long for Horvath’s menu to get funky though with the Bizarre Flying Humanoids of Mexico. It is named after the mysterious figures that were spotted over parts of Mexico several years ago. The video of that went viral, and so will ordering this drink. It comes out bright blue and instantly everyone at the bar asks what it is as soon as you order it. They start with Jalapeno infused Bacanora Blanco, which is in the agave spirit family, blue curacao, lime, and honey sourced from the Area 51 part of Nevada just for good measure. It is spicy and fun.
Most of us nostalgic types can remember a time in the ’90s and early 2000s when drinking Jager bombs in the Rivermarket was a thing. For those Horvath also threw in a modern version called the Surfer on Acid 2525. This starts with the old Jagermeister we all loved at one point, subs the Red Bull for Bang Pina Colada Energy Drink (because Red Bull is out of style apparently), and mixes in coconut rum and pineapple juice. It has more flavor than your Jager bomb of old with all the nostalgia of mixing uppers and downers.
There are lots of other drinks to love on the menu. The Port Old Fashioned is a simple rift on the old classic, the Sangria Cocktail is exactly what you would expect, and the Shake Your Bon-Bon brings back the butterscotch Schnapps from bad decisions in our youth. Overall the menu is a mix of nostalgic and new cocktail trends without ever taking itself too seriously.
Dizzy’s new cocktail menu drops today. Head in and grab one and a bowl of cheese dip.