John Sampson Neely

I have spent a bit of time traveling to different markets to see and learn how cocktails are made across the country. I got to learn the craft cocktails from the best of the best in Detroit at Wright and Company for about three years and started traveling, reading and learning everything that there was to learn about bartending and cocktails.

Detroit has great, well-rounded bartenders who can make you the best cocktail ever (and kill it with a beer and a shot!). I have learned from a whole community to get to this point in my bartending career so I would say that the community we have is the best part about what we do.

  • 1

    The BELT

    The Belt, Detroit MI 48226

    The Belt’s bars, Standby and The Skip, have heavy hitting bartenders, trap beats, cocktails and life changing food. Check out The Belt on the weekend to see it in full force.

  • 2

    The Sugar House

    Michigan Avenue, Detroit MI

    As one the first craft cocktails bars in Detroit, Sugar House is award winning in its own right and has one of the best whiskey collections in the city. Go on the third Sunday to catch Nicole New at Jazz Jamz!

  • 3

    Wright & Company

    Woodward Avenue, Detroit MI

    This second level space makes you feel like you’re not in Detroit anymore. The share plates paired with one of their well-crafted cocktails makes for a great for dinner or a nightcap.

  • 4

    The Oakland Art Novelty Company

    West Nine Mile Road, Ferndale MI

    A speakeasy-style cocktail bar with a great whisky list. If you want to get a great drink off the beaten path, this is the move to make.

  • 5

    Voyager

    Vester Street, Ferndale MI

    Voyager has the best seafood in Michigan right now, hands down, and they make simple yet elegant cocktails without missing a beat. Go for happy hour and get the catch of the day. You will not be disappointed.

  • 6

    Grey Ghost

    Watson Street, Detroit MI

    Grey Ghost has one of the best cocktail programs in the city. Get a steak and cocktail and you’ll get to watch some of the best bartenders in Detroit killing the game.

  • 7

    The Whisky Parlor

    Woodward Avenue, Detroit MI

    The cocktail program was put together by small group of bartenders and a great spot for happy hour, whiskey education and live music Thursday through Saturday.

  • 8

    Kiesling

    East Milwaukee Avenue, Detroit MI

    A lovely space and a team of strong bartenders. This a bar where you should get to know the staff – great people and great vibes.

  • 9

    Candy Bar

    Broadway Street, Detroit MI

    A bar narrowing in on science and technology of the modern cocktail. This big pink room and amazing chandelier will draw you in and the hospitality and wealth of knowledge will make you stay. Perfect nightcap.

  • 10

    Lady of the House

    Bagley Street, Detroit MI

    A great New American restaurant that was James Beard-nominated only a few months after opening its doors. The beverage program holds strong from brunch to dinner and the happy hour is not to be missed!

  • 11

    Selden Standard

    2nd Avenue, Detroit MI

    One of the most solid food and beverage programs in the city. The staff is outstanding and beyond professional.

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