After earning his stripes at some of the Valley’s most revered resorts and restaurants, it was time for Micah Olson to venture out on his own. Now the mixologist and co-owner of Crudo, Phoenix’s sushi bar meets Italian bistro, Olson is creating cocktails that are leaving customers speechless—or at least momentarily tongue tied.
Tell me about the drunkest customer you’ve ever had.
Once, when I worked at a local resort, a guy from a wedding on property came to the bar with his 17-year-old nephew. Barely slurring the words out of his mouth, he ordered two Kamikaze shots and two Long Islands. I informed him that I couldn’t serve him because he was visibly intoxicated and couldn’t serve his nephew because he was clearly underage. He yelled at me real quick then walked away. Twenty minutes passed and I look up to him yelling obscenities and waving his middle finger at me. This lasted about 10 minutes before security finally came and escorted him off property.
What is your number one pet peeve when working?
Rude people are my biggest pet peeve. We are serving the guests but are not their servants. Being kind can get you a long way with your server or bartender, which can greatly improve your experience.
What is your go-to drink when you’re at a bar other than your own?
You will almost always find me drinking bourbon on the rocks. I usually only drink cocktails when I am doing research and development.
What does ordering an Old Fashioned say about a person?
To me, it says that they know what a good drink is, as the old-fashioned is my personal favorite cocktail.
What do you like about this cocktail, Tongue Tied?
It is a fruity drink that comes off pretty serious because of the smoky mezcal and the bitter amaro. The lavender tincture gives it a wonderful calming aroma to entice you in.
Crudo, 3603 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix, 85018, 602.358.8666, crudoaz.com
Make your own Tongue Tied
1 muddled strawberry
1 oz. Mezcal
1 oz. Luxardo Amaro Abano
¾ oz. lime juice
¾ oz. simple syrup
Muddle strawberry and add remaining liquids and shake hard with ice. Double strain into chilled cocktail coupe. Spray with lavender tincture and garnish with strawberry slice.