My new favorite cocktail lounge, Death and Taxes is one of the hottest spots in Reno. I’d long heard about how beautiful their drinks were, so it was definitely time to hit this place up! It’s on Cheney Street in Midtown right across from Noble Pie.
First impression: Pleasantly intimidating exterior. Reminds me of an entrance to a Fantasyland dark ride. I can’t wait to see what’s behind these 2 black doors!
The first thing you notice when you enter is the two giant chandeliers, one on each side of the bar. I’m instantly impressed and captivated by the sparkle and beauty, as I love a good vintage chandelier. It’s very dark inside, owing in part to the black damask-covered walls, black furniture and floors, and the effect is luxurious, transporting you to a 1920s speakeasy where I expect Jay Gatsby to walk in at any moment. There’s just the right amount of soft mood lighting from vintage wall sconces and table lamps. Besides the bar top area, there is cozy seating in couches by both of the two fireplaces. I’m absolutely enamored with the design and decor. Black has never looked so good.
Death and Taxes offers gorgeous cocktails with fancy names like “Spanish Diplomat”, “Shrinking Violet”, and my new favorite, “Dead & Lovely”. As their website states, they specialize in ‘fresh artisanal cocktails made with seasonal ingredients, house-made syrups, and infusions’.
The Dead & Lovely is made of toasted coconut-infused bourbon, tropical juices and two kinds of rum, garnished with a dried rose. It’s sweet without being overwhelmingly so, and very aptly named, because this drink is absolutely lovely with the deceased rose floating elegantly on top.
I’ll give you a tip if you’re looking for the restroom and want to look like you know what you’re doing (because I didn’t) - it’s behind a frosted-glass door labeled “Office” which feels very film noir. The theming carries over into this little space, decorated with a gilded mirror, pedestal sink and dark subway tile. Yes, a restroom is just a restroom, with the potential to be boring, but here attention is paid to the detail in such a seemingly-unimportant area of an establishment.
There is outdoor seating available as well, which I plan to take advantage of when it’s no longer frostbite season. Private classes are available here, including tastings, pairings, bartending techniques, and more! You can also rent out the bar for private events. If you are looking for food, their restaurant Midtown Eats is right next door as well.
Death and Taxes is one classy joint, not only visually but flavorfully as well. My friend and I popped in for a short visit, but next time I’d like to linger longer and eat at the restaurant next door to round out the experience.