Just as juice bars go beyond the ordinary to include multi-juice drinks enhanced with herbs and seasonings, cocktails get a lift from regional and seasonal ingredients, with a few healthy-halo ideas thrown into the mix. Here are some drink ideas developed by mixologists around the country.
Classics like martinis have staying power in part because they’re so adaptable. Case in point: the Quinoa Vodka, arugula, kale and lemon martini at Proprietors Bar & Table in Nantucket, MA. The drink includes popular greens—arugula and kale— and features Fair Trade Quinoa Vodka during a time the United Nations is calling the International Year of Quinoa. On the cocktail menu, this martini is listed simply as House Cocktail No. 4 ($13.50). It was created by bar manager Jared Johnson.
Another classic, the Bloody Mary, takes on a regional note at Robert’s Maine Grill in Kittery, ME. The drink also supports the food menu that embraces all things Maine. Bartender Deb McCluskey makes the drink ($10) with a Maine-made cocktail mix, and garnishes it with celery, olive, pepperoncini and shrimp.
At Pain D’Avignon, a boulangerie and café in Hyannis, MA, the Snowbird Jam Cocktail ($11) is a seasonal specialty. It features peach ginger jam and white rum, with other warming flavors that help ease patrons from summer into fall and winter. By using jam, flavored rum and cardamom tincture, bar manager Tainah Carvalho has been able to provide out-of-season fruit flavors without adding artificial flavorings or heavy syrups.
Holiday drink choices at Marina Kitchen in San Diego include the MK Holiday No-Yolk Eggless Nog. This dairy-free and egg-free “eggnog slushy” variation was developed by bar manager Joshua Orr. It’s a combination of rum, brandy, almond milk, vanilla extract and sweetener.
Shake up your cocktail menu with inspired seasonal recipes. The following ideas will get you started.
• The Snowbird
• Robert’s Bloody Mary
• Fair Trade Quinoa Vodka, Arugula, Kale and Lemon Martini
• MK Holiday No Yolk Eggless Nog
• Spicy Sweet California Strawberry Tonic