Drink of the Week

"You've never had Hpnotiq? Hpno's the shit, dog!" said Dave Herrera, a man recognized more for his music knowledge than for his cocktail choices. "Drink Hpno and you're gonna be bangin' with Dre by the end of the night." Hpnotiq, also known as "blue juice," has been a favorite of the urban crowd for years, especially after its cameo in the R. Kelly music video "Snake," which showed Hpnotiq poured to the words "I'm lovin' the way you're movin' erotic, exotic sexy kittens sippin' Hpnotiq." Well, I'm sure serving up this liquor works for R. Kelly, because his prepubescent "dates" can't taste the cognac or triple-distilled vodka when they're masked by ultra-sweet tropical fruit juices (mango, passion fruit and kiwi). And the color of straight Hpnotiq ($8.50) -- as well as its incarnations as the Incredible Hulk ($8.50), a cocktail made with equal parts Hpno and Midori, and the Hpnotiq Hulk ($8.50), equal parts Hpnotiq and Cognac -- is so complementary to the striking color scheme of Vinyl's rooftop patio, which finally opened two weeks ago, that it would be a shame not to get Hpnotized there. Even though I'd walked up only two flights of stairs, stepping onto the roof at Vinyl made me feel like I'd been transported to the Greek Islands. The space, which holds over 300 people, boasts a dark-blue deck, attractive blue and off-white couches and cocktail tables filled with sea-smoothed stones -- all with a stunning view of the Rockies. If you're not currently bangin' with Dre, and R. Kelly isn't offering to take you to Mykonos on holiday, Vinyl's roof is the next best place to end your summer.


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