WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. — Halloween is many mixologists' favorite time of year — the chance to get creative and invent macabre drinks to kick off the spooky season. At the new Bamboo Room in Westlake Village, mixologist Austin Franco has been mixing up inventive drinks for 10 years and loves it.

“I think it’s a good creative outlet for someone like myself because you can get that instant feedback about what guests like or don’t like. It’s all about curating that experience for them,” said Franco.

But Franco really flexes his creative muscles this time of year when he draws inspiration from pop culture.

“Everyone loves Halloween. It really brings the kid out in you," Franco said. "People, believe it or not, like to be scared, so that’s where I drew the inspiration for this from."

Netflix’s recent mega-hit "Squid Game" is bringing gore to the forefront, a phenomenon reflected in the crimson hue of his latest drink, "The Cold Blooded." The drink is a blackberry lemon drop, topped by a rim of pomegranate-stained sugar.

During COVID quarantine, the cold-blooded drink was offered up as a take-home cocktail. It was so popular that it made its return this year for an in-real-life drinking experience, making this crimson concoction just the tonic for a spooky, boozy Halloween night.