What to Drink at America’s Cup in San Francisco

By Lanee Lee

As Queen Victoria watched the schooner, named America, pass the British Royal Yacht, during the first America’s Cup in 1851, she asked an attendant who was in second place.

“Your Majesty, there is no second,” he replied.

And this sums up what America’s Cup is all about, 162 years later – the pursuit of the world’s best sailing and now cocktails.

For a great view of the races, head to the America’s Cup Sports Bar located on Pier 27 in San Francisco’s Embarcadero district. A champion in his own right, the bar’s cocktail menu was designed by local mixologist Scott Beattie. It’s an extensive, 20-item menu, utilizing many local spirits like St. George, and divvied into six sections: Agaves, Negronis, Angry Ginger Bucks, Manhattans, Old Fashioneds and Specialty Cocktails.

Since Italy is out, while watching New Zealand, U.S. or Sweden’s wickedly fast 72-foot catamarans actually fly above the water, here are some of our picks for winning cocktails at America’s Cup:

Carribean Buck by Scott BeattieCoastal Pimm’s Cup – Pimm’s No. 1, St. George Terroir Gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, Angostura bitters, Bundaberg Ginger beer and garnished with cucumbers and bay leaf.

Caribbean Buck – Plantation 5 yr Rum, Smith & Cross Navy Strength, Lime, Ginger Bitters, Nutmeg

Waterfront Negroni – No. 209 Gin, Campari, Bittermens Bäska Snaps,, Carpano Antica, Orange

Yachtsman Manhattan – Even William’s Single Barrel, Templeton Rye, Carpano Antica, Bitters

Hot Tips Navigating America’s Cup

Since this is the first time in nearly 20 years that America’s Cup has returned to the U.S., you might want to go big and get tickets for the PIER 39 Garage Rooftop. It has killer views of the entire race, not just the finish line like at the America’s Cup Sports Bar, and the ticket price includes eats and drinks.

acsailingSF yacht

Another way to get in the spirit of America’s Cup is to try your hand at sailing an actual America’s Cup racing yacht. Head out on a three-hour, San Francisco bay sailing excursion, including a jaunt under the Golden Gate, with ACSailingSF. You may have driven, biked and walked across the Golden Gate Bridge, but if you’ve never sailed under the bridge, it is simply a must-do when in San Francisco. And get ready to participate as part of the crew, an ACSailingSF experience is hands-on, offering a small taste of what it’s like as a crew member of an America’s Cup team.

The 34th America’s Cup Finals are September 7 to 21.

Featured image is the Italy’s racing boat during the Louis Vuitton Cup – the preliminary races before America’s Cup begins.