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Learn how to mix a classic cocktail in Seattle's original skyscraper

The historic Smith Tower is hosting a monthly cocktail class with spectacular views of the city and sound. #k5evening

SEATTLE — If you enjoy craft cocktails, there's a fun new way to learn some bartending skills: take a cocktail mixing class inside an historic skyscraper in downtown Seattle.

Smith Tower is hosting an intimate, monthly class on the 21st level — with sweeping views of the city and sound.

"I can see the wheel, I can see the Sound, I can see the Olympics, it's awesome,” said Gianna Grisolia, general manager of Smith Tower.

The class is $125/person and includes a self-guided tour through Smith Tower’s historic exhibits, admission to the 35th floor Observatory, a welcome champagne cocktail and charcuterie, and all of the tools and ingredients required for mixing two to three drinks.

Since 1914, Smith Tower has offered some of the best views in the city and served many purposes, including being home base to legendary bootlegger Roy Olmsted. Grisolia said there's something poetic about now teaching guests how to make classic cocktails.

“This is actually a private level, we don't open this level to the public without a ticket," she said. "I personally think it has one of the best views of Smith Tower because there's no obstruction."

Class sizes are usually kept to about 25 attendees, and lead bartender Greg Rapper teaches recipes that are also served in the Observatory Bar.

"We could make it bigger, we could sell 100 tickets and have everyone here. But that's not the point. We want to give you a face to face experience," Grisolia said. "We want guests to come in and see and interact with another person.” 

The class begins around sunset and lasts for about two hours.

Credit: KING TV
Cocktail mixing students watch the sun set over the Puget Sound during class.

Grisolia said it’s all part of a concerted effort to welcome locals back inside Smith Tower.

"The team at Smith Tower is really dedicated to creating experiences,” she said. “We want people to come here and not just grab a drink, grab some view, we want them to have a memory and they get to become a part of our history, too — which is really important to me."

Smith Tower Cocktail Classes are held at 6 p.m. on the first Thursday of every month. Reservations are available online.

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