Drink Up At Vegas’ Brand New Cannabis Lounge

If you’re visiting the brand-new cannabis consumption lounge Smoke And Mirrors, you may be pleasantly surprised that they offer more than just a place to smoke weed. There’s also an amazing collection of craft mocktails designed to appeal to everyone, regardless of their cannabis habits.

The first page of the Smoke And Mirrors menu offers the types of products marijuana users might expect to find at Las Vegas’ first state-regulated cannabis consumption lounge: marijuana flower by the gram and eighth (1/8 ounce); basic and infused pre-rolls; dabs; and rigs for smoking. There’s something for just about every smoker. It’s the second page, however, that may be of more interest to those who prefer edibles to smoking, as well as mocktail connoisseurs and foodies.

That’s where you’ll find Smoke And Mirrors’ collection of eight mocktails, available with or without THC. And they’re surprisingly smart, complex and delicious.

First Of Its Kind

While Las Vegas’ first cannabis consumption lounge, The Sky High Lounge, attached to the NuWu dispensary, has been in operation for several years. It operates on Las Vegas Paiute Tribal lands. It doesn’t fall under the Cannabis Compliance Board’s regulations. So Smoke And Mirrors is breaking new ground as the first such business to fall under those rules. As such, it could shed some light on what future consumption lounges will look like and what they will offer.

It’s located in the same building as the Thrive Dispensary on Sammy Davis Jr. Drive, just behind Resorts World, and shares a parking lot with Sapphire Gentlemen’s Club. It was developed in conjunction with the consulting company Reset.

“The way regulations were written in other states, they were all being offered smoking rooms – the opium den of the modern century,” Evolve’s Christopher LaPorte explained during a recent episode of the Food and Loathing podcast, recorded at Smoke And Mirrors.

“But … we want this to be a place for you to hang out. It’s the reason we have DJs every night. It’s the reason we provide these couches, and TVs with really cool graphics on them. We want you to sit back and relax. And we offer low-dose ‘cocktails,’ so you can actually have a couple and get in a conversation.”

Building A THC Mocktail

To create the cocktail collection, LaPorte and his team started with a line of mixers by Sobreo. Sobreo markets its mixers for cocktails and mocktails, specifically for cannabis users. All six of its flavors are billed as organic, sustainably sourced, and completely sugar-free. But LaPorte likes the line for a different reason.

“It just gives the drink more complexity, and there’s more stuff happening in your mouth that’s kind of fun,” he explains.

He and his team use them as the starting point for their seven cocktails, building on them to create remarkable non-alcoholic potions that draw inspiration from multiple sources. The Godfather, for example, is a daiquiri-inspired mix of Sobreo Vietnamese Anise blueberry puree, lime and pineapple juices, agave nectar and basil leaves, dedicated to local County Commissioner Tick Segerblom. There’s a nod to Imagine Dragons in the Evolve, made with Sobreo Indonesian cinnamon, apple juice and vanilla syrup and garnished with a dehydrated apple and a cinnamon stick. And there’s nothing subtle about the local rock stars who inspired the “Mr. Brightside,” which pairs Sobreo Valencian Orange with watermelon juice and lime juice in a tajin-rimmed glass.

Each of the seven mocktails is available in “virgin” form, without any THC added, for $15. If you want one dosed with 2.5 mg of THC (about ¼ of a standard edible dose), it will cost you $19. If you want 5 mg, it’s $23. It goes on like that, up to a 10mg version. Every drink comes with a stirrer that notes how much, if any, THC is in the beverage.

Those familiar with edibles might be surprised at how little taste the THC adds to these drinks compared to the obvious marijuana flavors you’ll find in many THC-infused chocolates and baked goods.

“You will not taste the weed residue taste that you normally taste because of the distillates that we’re using,” says LaPorte. “They’re extremely well-made, processed properly, and stirred up real good.”

(AUTHOR’S NOTE – I noticed very slight hints of marijuana taste in a Mr. Brightside infused with 5 mg of THC, but I really had to search for them.)

Other Offerings

It’s worth noting that, per state regulations, no alcohol is served at Smoke And Mirrors. But assorted coffee options were recently added, with the option of infusing them with THC.

There’s no food available within the lounge, for now at least. But LaPorte is hopeful that the consumption lounge format will eventually allow for some truly upscale edibles service or cannabis cooking competitions.

“It has been front of mind since Day One,” he says. There are prominent people in the cannabis industry who are great chefs who make beautiful [cannabis-infused] dinners. And we want to present that. I know it’s there.”