Cocktails are big. So are craft beers. There is a major drink revival. Bars have long been profit centers, but now they are becoming destinations in and of themselves. Guests are increasingly demanding when it comes to drinks, and smart restaurant operators are getting more creative to meet their needs.
When so much media focus and consumer attention is paid to bar programs, it’s important to differentiate yourself. Defining a clear and unique concept is the first step, and the one most often missed. Are you a rum bar? A vodka joint? Do you skew creative or classic?
Swing State – A non-partisan Cosmo with Belvedere vodka, Grand Marnier, white cranberry juice and lime.
Mudslinging Mudslide – A creamy combination of Belvedere vodka, Baileys and Kahlua served with a shot of espresso.
Red Rush – A martini mixed with Belvedere vodka, pomegranate and grapefruit juices and a “conservative” splash of Grand Marnier.
Blue Crush – Blueberry lemonade refresher made for the adult voter with a “liberal” pour of Belvedere vodka, a splash of lavender and soda.
The Thin Margin – A skinny cocktail made with Belvedere Lemon Tea vodka, fresh mint and a splash of soda- less than 200 calories.
Hail To The Chief! – Sparkling champagne cocktail made with Chandon Brut, St. Germain Elderflower liqueur, and a dash of Belvedere vodka.
Guy Fawkes Cocktail
2 Parts Drambuie
1 Part Islay single malt Scotch
1 Part Oloroso Sherry
5 Drops bitter end Moroccan bitters
Add ingredients to a mixing tin half-filled with ice. Shake until the tin is frosted. Strain into a rocks glass over fresh ice and garnish with a burnt grapefruit peel.
This drink brings together Guy Fawkes’ English roots and Spanish exploits, overlaid on the smokiness of Islay Scotch to evoke the infamous Gunpowder Plot to which he is inextricably linked on the “Fifth of November” every year, and was sent to us by the mixologists at Drambuie.
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Daily’s recently announced the introduction of two new frozen pouch flavors: Spiced Sangria and Hard Cider. These latest additions to the Daily’s frozen pouch cocktail line, which includes a variety of margaritas and daiquiris, are seasonal flavors that will be available for a limited time. The Hard Cider has natural apple flavor with cinnamon and seasonal spices, while the Spiced Sangria is made with red wine infused with oranges, pears, cranberry and holiday spices. The new pouches can also be enjoyed warm, according to the company.
Montalvo Tequila is now available from Casa Montalvo Holdings. The triple distilled tequila is handcrafted in small batches by fourth-generation tequila producers Sergio and Carlos Gonzalez. Formulated from 100% Blue Weber agave from Jalisco, Mexico, Montalvo is available in three expressions: Plata, Reposado and Anejo. The Reposado and Anejo are bottled from single barrels, and the three expressions have a suggested retail price of $40 to $55 for a 750-ml. bottle.
New Rebel Yell Flavors
Rebel Yell Bourbon recently announced the introduction of two new flavors for its Rebel Reserve line–Honey and Cherry. Bottled at 70 proof, the new products are available for a suggested retail price of $12.99 for a 750-ml. bottle.
If you are a follower of the beer blogosphere, or the Twitosphere, I suppose, you’ll know that California’s Sierra Nevada Brewing Company, the second largest craft brewery in the U.S., has chosen a location just outside of Asheville, N.C., as the site of their new east coast brewery, as has, oddly enough, New Belgium Brewing. This has some people cheering and others worrying about the chilling effect the arrival of a large capacity brewery could have on the craft brewers of the east.
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