Getting the Best Casino Cocktail

One of the biggest perks for many of a trip to a big casino in Las Vegas such as the Wynn is the chance to enjoy free cocktails while gambling. It won’t always make up for your losses at the blackjack tables or the video poker machines, but it’s definitely nice to essentially have an open bar available to you and a cocktail waitress on hand to bring you drink after drink. Just like there’s a good basic strategy for playing blackjack, there’s also a bit of a strategy to making sure you get the best cocktail possible, so don’t just order something simple like a rum and coke under the assumption that it’s the best you can hope for in a free drink.

The cardinal rule of getting the best cocktail at a casino is to not be shy. While the drink you’ll be served often depends on the quality of the casino you’re gambling at and the stake you’re playing (don’t expect to be served a Grey Goose and cranberry if you’re playing penny slots at the Imperial Palace), you’ll often be surprised at what you might be served. Always ask for a top shelf liquor in your drink and never just use the generic version; if you ask for Grey Goose and cranberry you might get lucky and get exactly that; order a vodka and cranberry and you’re guaranteed to get the cheapest vodka they have. Don’t be afraid to ask but be polite; if they won’t serve you what you originally ask for you’ll always have a chance to order something else.

Some casinos will refuse to make elaborate mixed drinks but others such as pina coladas, Long Island iced teas, and mojitos are often served, especially at higher end casinos such as the Wynn, Bellagio, and Venetian. Don’t take this to extremes, though, and order some ridiculously complicated cocktail that hardly anyone has heard of as you’ll just annoy the cocktail waitress and likely get slower drink service for the rest of the night. The higher the limits you’re playing, the more likely the casino will be to work with you as far as your drink orders. This includes both the willingness to mix special cocktails as well as the quality of the liquor, champagne or wine that you might order.

State laws prohibit casinos from serving you more than one drink at a time so don’t waste time arguing with the cocktail waitress; at some casinos this includes ordering doubles, so plan accordingly. If you absolutely can’t wait for the cocktail waitress to return then get another player at the table who’s not drinking to order a second drink for you and drink theirs (although some dealers may call you out on this). For faster cocktail service, play higher limits and tip well -- especially at the beginning of your gambling session -- as it will increase the frequency that the cocktail waitress comes around. In general, the higher-end the casino the better the free cocktails will be, so be sure to read casino reviews at sites like Casinoguide to scope out the best places to stay before your next trip.

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