Ervin Machado, CSW, WSET, CMS, is beverage director and sommelier for Florida-based Big Time Restaurant Group, which owns Elisabetta’s in West Palm Beach and Delray Beach; Louie Bossi’s in Delray Beach and Fort Lauderdale, along with City Oyster in Delray, City Cellar in West Palm and Big City Tavern in Fort Lauderdale.
As kids, we were not allowed to drink sodas, so my mom would make us this hibiscus tea That was her way of making a natural replacement for us.
I was disconnected from hibiscus when I started my sommelier career, however, three years ago, while surfing in Costa Rica, a local bartender made me a sangria with hibiscus and it was a big hit! I decided I should add it to our beverage programs.
My mother’s favorite drink is the Margarita so I decided to create and add a Hibiscus Spiced Margarita to our menu and garnish it with a flower for my mom. Now I get to see it being enjoyed by hundreds every day, as it is one of our most popular cocktails!
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