Classic Cocktails, Molecular Mixology and the All-Around Awesome World of Aaron DeFeo

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Aaron DeFeo is taking cocktails to brand new places.
  • Aaron DeFeo is taking cocktails to brand new places.

Aaron DeFeo is the man who took Hotel Congress’ cocktail program and refashioned it into something truly special last year. So special, indeed, that the cocktail menu took first place in last year’s Best of Tucson® awards.

DeFeo left Congress recently (we also hear his cocktail program at Congress has gone kaput, but haven’t been down there to check) and moved on to Casino Del Sol, where he’s been hard at work getting ready for the big opening of the casino’s new addition in November.

Aside from sort of reworking the casino’s cocktail program, DeFeo is also branching into the world of molecular mixology, a unique branch of cocktailing that focuses on presenting cocktail elements in unusual forms. DeFeo gives the example of adding dry ice to a bottle of Gran Marnier and floating the resulting gas on top of a drink, or creating inventive foams and other wild elements.

DeFeo says he’s worked up at least 30 original cocktails and “tweaked classics” for the casino, as well as barrel-aged drinks. He’s also working on drinks made chiefly from brown spirits such as whiskey and bourbon for the casino’s new steakhouse, P.Y. Steakhouse.

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