The Mirage's beverage director shares the secrets of success
When it comes to business, Robert Conlon, director of beverage for The Mirage, says there’s one thing to remember. “There’s a secret to business, and it’s so simplistic, yet it’s so difficult to find: You have to work for people that believe in you and you have to work with people that you believe in. I think that’s the biggest key to success. You have to have faith and believe that you’re with the right team.” Conlon believes he has found that team at The Mirage.
He moved to Las Vegas in 2005, and after managing some high-volume restaurants, he was asked to join a Strip hotel, and that’s where he found his passion for beverage programs. While he’s worked at several properties in Las Vegas, for the past couple years he’s been with The Mirage, where he’s helped develop and maintain the beverage program for “pools, bars, lounges and restaurants,” he said.
One of the restaurants Conlon helped open—after two years of batting around the idea and in the last year bringing it to fruition—is the new Osteria Costa, which just opened its doors. “We were envisioning a restaurant where you’re transported to the Amalfi Coast,” he said. “The food and the drinks—it takes you away and you no longer feel like you’re in a casino.”
Conlon is proud of his team and their accomplishments so far and, every day he looks forward to new challenges and new trends, he said. “Every day is exciting. We get to do exciting things—together.”
Many of Osteria Costa’s specialty cocktails are “fresh, effervescent, light and crisp,” Conlon said. One of his favorites is the Absolut Sgroppino. The classic Italian cocktail with a twist is made with Absolut vodka, citrus sherbet that is made in-house and Prosecco. The cocktail is a smooth, slightly sweet and refreshing sip, with a consistency that reminds you of a sparkling milkshake.
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