Monday, March 22, 2010

Distinguished Taste

It is said that the average customer or guest at a restaurant will order the same ten cocktails. I refuse to believe that this is due to lack of interest or desire for something different. I know that your favorite 'usuals' are great and as I said it my last blog everyone enjoys a good classic. However, the top ten drinks most requested, ordered and made by bartenders are as follows: the Caesar, Cosmopolitan, White Russian, Vodka Martini, Singapore Sling, Margarita, Manhattan, Long Island Ice Tea, Blue Lagoon and Pina Colada. Daring to be different can go a long way. What you can gain from not trying something ordinary could pleasantly surprised you. The worst case scenario would be going back to the safe ceaser if you are not pleasantly surprised.

I know that my best experiences with innovative cocktails is when I have been brave enough to take a leap of faith and be carried away by the moment, the summer air and great company.

With the summer approaching and patio weather coming remember to indulge and forget everything you know. get creative try things you think you hate, sometimes they can be just the thing you need.

I will leave you with a summer drink that will have you salivating and anticipating the patios and summers eves to come.

Mexican without a cause

5 small chunks of watermelon

1 chopped lime

1/2 oz. Simple Syrup

1 1/2 oz. Tequila

1/2 oz. Tripple Sec

splash of apple juice

Crushed Ice

Back to the Classics

Currently there is a trend happening within the alcoholic beverage industry. People are now committing campaigns to the classic cocktails of the past. Now this may seem rather unoriginal but in fact it is really clever. This trend is sticking to what we know is good while making it even better. this week I am taking you for a walk down memory lane; from the past to the present, simply refined. I know if you are at all like me I am always seeking out points of difference and innovative ideas. So this week I am going to give you five recipes you can make in the comfort of your own home. Two tips when making classic cocktails, one is learning the importance of muddling(to muddle combined all ingredients in a glass this helps to get all the flavours out of the ingredients before adding the majority of the liquid) and two is learning to love Scotch.

Join me in revisiting the Classics!

The Rusty Nail

1 1/2 oz of Scotch
1/2 oz. Drambuie
1 lemon twist to garnish

The Old Fashioned

1 sugar cube
2 dashes of bitter
2 orange slices
2 cherries

Muddle these ingredients and fill the glass with ice then add:

Either Scotch or Bourbon, it's really your choice!

The Mojito

1/2 teaspoon of sugar
1/2 Lime
10 fresh Mint leaves
Then Muddle...
Then add

2 oz. Rum
4 oz. Carbonated water (soda)
and an abundance of crushed ice

The Gimlet

2 oz. Gin
2 oz. Fresh Lime Juice
1 teaspoon of sugar
and ice
Simply Irresistible

The Manhattan (the classic way)

2 oz. of Rye
1/ oz. Sweet vermouth
1 dash of bitters
Garnish with a cherry

The Manhattan (the classic with a twist)
2 oz. Rye
1 oz. Navan (Vanilla Cognac)
1 dash of bitters
Garnish with 3 Cherries

Friday, March 19, 2010

Happy Hour

It's Friday, the end of every ones hectic week, a time to put up your feet and just relax. Perhaps a time to forget the stresses of the office and laugh a little. For most people the weekend is a time off to just be, but not me. Friday and Saturdays are my work week. The craziest part about my job is that I get paid to help all of you de-stress, put your feet up and hopefully laugh a lot. I get to be in a busy atmosphere with people just looking to have fun. Every Friday my goal is to ensure that everyone I come into contact with is indulging, that I feel is really my job after all. In order to do this I create a cocktail that can be uniquely theirs. Mixing all there most desired tastes into a creation. I don't know if it is just me but I have had this experience at a lounge before when someone created a cocktail just for me, it made me feel special, important and satisfied. So next time you go out engage your bartender, ask them what they make that is different from the rest.

My recent experience like this was with a bar owner who had me sit down and have a cocktail. I make it sound like it was against my will, but it was a busy day and I had hardly any time to indulge without guilt. He finally asked if I had desert yet, I said that I hadn't. within a few short minutes I had a frosted martini glass filled with decadence and garnished with a strawberry. I am not a desert girl very often but this I could never say no to. There are so many different ways to indulge with cocktails its all about finding one that is uniquely yours. Try not to keep all the secret treasures to yourself.

So whether its your Friday Happy hour or desert, just indulge.

Desert Martini

A Mexican Apple Pie

1 oz Tequila

1/2 oz Butterscotch schnapps

1 oz Apple Cider

1 tsp of fresh lemon juice

A apple wheel to garnish

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Sunday Social

This past Sunday, March 14 th, I got the pleasure of Simple Indulgence with some of my close friends and classmates. This event was a last minute event that was put together with perfection. When I arrived the ambiance was stimulating, everyone was in great spirits and looked fantastic.

The highlight of the night for me was the cocktail list complete with six unique cocktails for which I was not privileged enough to have the ingredients. All I know is that these cocktails were the definition of innovation, made with love and executed with excellence. To put it quite simply they were decadent.

Although I don't usually hesitate ordering a cocktail there was one made with sage that made me hesitate. Fir this very reason I made sure I had this cocktail to see how it was inspired and what it was all about. Let me tell you some of the things were hesitate to indulge in the most just might pay off in the end. It broadened my spectrum to the world of cocktails and taught me to simply indulge without hesitation. I mean if you are going to let your hair down you may as well feel the breeze.

I must give a shout out to Whitehaut...If you have not got the opportunity to be pleasantly surprised and want to truly indulge this is one hot spot I would not miss out on.

So this week try new things, get creative and don't hesitate, just say yes.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Summer in February

For years now, I have been lucky enough to spend the greater part of the summer in Muskoka. It was about four summers ago now and it was a really hot July. I got invited to this event on Lake Roso called Christmas in July. At first I thought that it was a rather absurd concept. I like to embrace the summer and not think of the snow to come, but as a Canadian I realized how much we are in love with our seasons. I suppose so much so that some of us miss the snow even in the hot summer. This event embraced winter cocktails, great beer and a hot fire. It is an event that I find to this day hard to forget and now every year on July 25th my friends, family and I celebrate Christmas in July. It is of course another good excuse to have some creative cocktails with great company.

So I thought to myself on this rather snowy day, if we can have Christmas in July, why not celebrate summer in February. February is the month of the winter blues so let’s bring the hot days and warm nights of July to this month by drinking summer cocktails. So I propose that tonight being the 25th of February gather your friends and indulge in your favorite summer cocktails. Get creative! For this purpose I have suggested some creative summer cocktails you can make in your own home. In the hot summer simplicity is key, but that does not mean the cocktails are not tasty! So start a fire get in your shorts and feel the warmth of a hot summer night. Just think the summer is just around the corner…so feel the heat.

Tonight forget the snow…dress inappropriately for winter… and simply indulge!


1 oz. Banff Ice Vodka
4 oz. limeade
2 oz. Lemon Lime Soda

To a rocks glass filled with ice, add Banff Ice Vodka, limeade and soda.
Garnish with a mint sprig.


1 oz. Smirnoff Lime Twist Vodka.
½ oz. Captain Morgan’s parrot bay coconut rum.
4 oz. Pineapple Juice.

Garnish with Lime wheels.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Climb the Mountain

I recently spent my last week assisting a event in Blue Mountain. The event is called Ski Cup and it is an annual event held by Sir Corp. It is an event that was created to assist in team building and really just to get out of the restaurants and let your hair down. In the past I have been an attendant so this year was a very different experience for me.

Amongst all the chaos I was able to slip away with a good friend for a 'happy hour' cocktail. I knew that this time was an advantage to have a great cocktail created just for me. I went to a bar located in the heart of Blue Mountain's Village. I walked in to a warm open fireplace that encompassed appropriately a cabin lodge feel. I took a seat at a table by the fire and the bartender approached the table. My friend already knew exactly what he wanted and ordered his Guinness. As tempting as that sounded I asked the bartender, "can you create a drink just for me?' he immediately responded with yes and asked me what my taste was. After a minute he left and returned with a fabulous cocktail. Although this drink was made just for me I named it in his honour. I call this cocktail, 'he's banging out of control'.

I would climb the Blue Mountain to have this cocktail again!

Recipe for 'He's banging out of control':

1/2 ounce Sour Raspberry Liqueur
1/2 ounce Banana Liqueur
1 ounce Vodka
1/2 ounce Absolute Mango vodka
1/2 ounce Mango puree
Garnished: 3 Fresh Raspberries

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Over Indulgence...

I know it's hard to believe that one can over indulge in one of life's great pleasures, however, when it comes to cocktails it DOES happen. I promise not to lecture about responsible drinking because we are all adults and choose when we want to act recklessly.

When I was younger and of course by younger I mean I was legal...(umm..let’s go with that) my drink of choice was well any kind of vodka, particularity raspberry vodka. Let me tell you...the very smell of that raspberry vodka brings back not so fond memories of fast trips down staircases, very clean bathroom floors and the luxurious McDonalds meal the very morning after.

With age comes new tastes, I would say class also follows but that is mighty presumptuous. Ladies, just because you are holding a martini glass does not mean you are being classy. Yes, I know on Sex in the City Carrie does look very classy with that Cosmopolitan, but let’s be honest how classy are Samantha’s actions following three or maybe six of those martinis. There is no such thing as glorified mistakes.

My challenge to you this week is to find that sipping cocktail and although some of those cocktails are so tasty that sipping becomes guzzling, it can be done.

So here’s a tip, order that classic Cosmopolitan with a twist on the rocks with extra cranberry juice. The tip about ordering a martini on the rocks is that it slows your sipping, every time the ice hits your lips the ice stops you from the guzzling and if you are tempted to take it to a ‘whole notha leva’ remind yourself lets….

Keep it classy!

What makes a true Cosmopolitan:

1 oz vodka

1/2 oz triple sec

1/2 oz fresh squeezed lime juice

1/2 oz cranberry juice