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Altar- Chi Herbal Martini

Altar Chi Herbal Martini

Lowtails (low-alcohol cocktials) and non-alcoholic "mocktails" are appearing on more and more bar menus, and Altar makes it easy for home-bartenders to create their own craft lowtails at home.  You don't want to add too many other elements as the flavors can quickly become "muddied". Chi is a complex blend of cherries, mint, ginger, juniper, and sumac making it a natural fit for a herbaceous gin. Explore the rest of the herbal blends http://www.altarco.com/.  

Inner Peace:

2 oz Altar- Chi Herbal Martini  

.75 oz Gin

.5 oz Lemon Juice

.25 oz Cherry Heering

Add all ingredients to cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake for 15-30 seconds. Strain into chilled cocktail glass. 

 

Scrappy's Bitters

Martinez Cocktail- Recipe Below

Martinez Cocktail- Recipe Below

Scrappy's Bitters first hit the bitters scene in 2008 when it wasn't the crowded market it's become today, and they have only grown more successful since that time. Part of their success can be attributed to their commitment to organic ingredients and no artificial flavors or colors. Scrappy's "craft" bitters are perfect representations of the ingredients they contain along with a balance of carefully selected herbs and spices. We mixed up a few of their recommendations, one classic cocktail and two original cocktails from influential West Coast bartenders. 

Dr. Girlfriend Cocktail

Dr. Girlfriend Cocktail

Dr. Girlfriend

(recipe from Phil Thompson, of Tavern Law

1.25 oz Gin

.5 oz St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur

.5 oz Aperol

.75 oz Grapefruit Juice

.5 oz Lemon Juice

Float Scrappy's Lavender Bitters

Add all ingredients to cocktail shaker filled with ice. Shake for 15-30 seconds. Double-strain into chilled cocktail glass. 

Better Part of Valor

Better Part of Valor

Better Part of Valor

(recipe from Allison Weber) 

1.5 oz Weste Bourne Navy Strength Gin

1 oz Cocchi Americano

.75 oz Amaro Nonino

1/8 oz Fernet

2 dashes of Scrappy's Grapefruit Bitters

Add all ingredients to cocktail mixing glass filled with ice. Stir for 30-45 seconds. Strain into chilled cocktail glass. 

 

Martinez

1 oz Old Tom Gin

2 oz sweet vermouth

2 dashes Scrappy's Orange Bitters

1/8 oz Maraschino

 Add all ingredients to cocktail mixing glass filled with ice. Stir for 30-45 seconds. Strain into chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with lemon twist. 

Cocktails at Kask in Portland, OR

El Diablo- Mark McMinn has week working on perfecting the Diablo cocktail since he first learned how to make it at Patterson House. His latest rendition at KASK calls for Pueblo Viejo Blanco tequila, Combier cassis liqueur, house-made ginger syrup, and a splash of soda.

El Diablo- Mark McMinn has week working on perfecting the Diablo cocktail since he first learned how to make it at Patterson House. His latest rendition at KASK calls for Pueblo Viejo Blanco tequila, Combier cassis liqueur, house-made ginger syrup, and a splash of soda.

This article was originally published in my column on Serious Eats:Drink-Portland. 

At KASK in Portland, the spirits in each drink are not unique for the sake of being unique, nor obscure merely for hipster-cred. The team at KASK is passionate about finding the best quality and creating simple (generally 5 ingredients or less), yet remarkably tasty cocktails that Bar Manager/Beverage Director Tommy "Tweed" Klus says are "approachable, with a hint of geekiness".

 

The Leather Canary- This original cocktail from Nathan Gerdes smooths the transition from cooler weather with bitter, bright and sweet flavors playing in harmony. The cocktail is comprised of Old Overholt Whiskey, Gran Classico, Combier Pamplemousse, Punt E Mes, and a grapefruit twist.

The Leather Canary- This original cocktail from Nathan Gerdes smooths the transition from cooler weather with bitter, bright and sweet flavors playing in harmony. The cocktail is comprised of Old Overholt Whiskey, Gran Classico, Combier Pamplemousse, Punt E Mes, and a grapefruit twist.

Lead Bartender Mark McMinn said his background working as a barista for 10 years led him to pay close attention to detail. "I like introducing people to new spirits; it's fun to watch their minds expand", said McMinn. He used to judge recipes by how he thought they might taste based on the ingredient list, but years of experience have taught him to taste everything before making a judgment call. "Knowing that anything can be made well is one of the most exciting parts of the job", said McMinn, "...but you need to know how everything—good or bad—tastes first."

Bootstrap Buck- Tommy Tweed created this cocktail for the opening menu at KASK. The blend of Cruzan Blackstrap rum, lime, demerara sugar syrup, Fentiman's ginger beer, and freshly grated nutmeg has been a favorite ever since.

Bootstrap Buck- Tommy Tweed created this cocktail for the opening menu at KASK. The blend of Cruzan Blackstrap rum, lime, demerara sugar syrup, Fentiman's ginger beer, and freshly grated nutmeg has been a favorite ever since.

The newest addition to the KASK team is Nathan Gerdes, who previously ran the bar program at H50 Bistro. Gerdes began his bartending journey by mixing up Screwdrivers and White Russians for his high school friends. An unrelenting inquisitiveness (and sweltering kitchen) drove Gerdes, a former pasta chef, out of the kitchen and into the bar to learn and hone his skills, and to do what he loves best—socializing and conversing with others.

 

Moscow Mule- What do these bartenders really want to drink in the summer time? A classic, refreshing Moscow Mule. At KASK, they use locally distilled Medoyeff vodka, lime, house made ginger syrup, and the spicy Fentiman's ginger beer.

Moscow Mule- What do these bartenders really want to drink in the summer time? A classic, refreshing Moscow Mule. At KASK, they use locally distilled Medoyeff vodka, lime, house made ginger syrup, and the spicy Fentiman's ginger beer.

The White Lady cocktail is a classic—a silky, luscious yet crisp cocktail made with Small's gin, lemon, Combier liqueur, and one egg white.

The White Lady cocktail is a classic—a silky, luscious yet crisp cocktail made with Small's gin, lemon, Combier liqueur, and one egg white.

Mark McMinn

Mark McMinn

Tommy Tweed

Tommy Tweed

Cocktails at Justice Snows in Aspen, Colorado

Joshua Peter-Smith, lead bartender at Justice Snows in Aspen, CO knows how to mix a cocktail. With flavors that are oft-inspired by local ingredients in their simplest form, to culinary creations designed specifically for the creative cocktails that grace the lengthy menu, they serve to invite not intimidate new and seasoned drinkers alike. Check out the recipes below for a sampling of the his latest works and classic cocktail favorites.

The Scottish Traveler Cocktail

The Scottish Traveler

1.5 oz Caorunn Scottish Gin

.5 oz Meletti Anisette

1 oz Fresh Lemon Juice

.5 oz Juniper Simple Syrup

2 inches of Muddled Celery

1/8th of muddle Apple

Shake with vigor, double fine strain over rocks in a single old fashion glass, with a fennel salt rim.  Garnish with apple slices, and celery tops. 

Clover Club Cocktail

 Clover Club

2 oz of No.3 Dry Gin

1 oz Lemon Juice

6 muddled Raspberries

.75oz Simple Syrup

1oz Egg White

Shake with vigor, double fine strain into coupe glass.  Garnish and zest with lemon peel.  

By Any Other Name Cocktail

By Any Other Name

1.25 oz Junipero Gin

.75 oz G.E. Massenez Poire Williams Brandy

.75 oz Rose Petal Infused Zirbenz Stone Pine Liqueur

.5 oz Fresh Lemon Juice

.75 oz. Fresh Ruby Red Grapefruit Juice

.75 oz Egg white

Shake with vigor, double fine strain into cocktail glass, garnish with a rose petal.  

Bijou Cocktail

 Bijou

1.5 oz Tanquerey Ten Gin

.75 oz Vya Sweet Vermouth

.75 oz Green Chartreuse

2 dashes of Bitter Truth Orange Bitter

Combine all in mixing glass, stir gently with ice 40 times. Strain into small coupe, garnish with cherry.

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