Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Creative Cocktails

Whenever I visit a new restaurant, one of the first things I browse is the cocktail menu. Even if I'm sticking to iced tea at lunch time, my curiosity draws me to look through it. If there are over 4 martinis, I usually close the book.. realizing that the place is just trying too hard (and likely none of the drinks are particularly good). I prefer short lists of libations with sparse, fresh ingredients as opposed to a bar menu comparable to a 'Cheesecake Factory' type book. And, in certain places, I find exactly what I'm seeking: a limited list of super-inventive, mixologist creations that beg to be sampled. 

On a recent trip to Park City, Utah, I found exactly what I was looking for on an afternoon 'relaxation session' on the gorgeous balcony of the St. Regis Deer Valley resort (and so did my husband). We had just one each, shared a little for tasting and that was was enough to make the day special. While this photo doesn't quite do the drinks justice, I promise if you try them at home... you will be blown away by just how smooth and absolutely yummy they are.  

The yellow reflection in this shot is really the sun. The cucumber is ideally a
nice, light green while the gimlet is a pale pink.

Hendricks Gin, slice of English cucumber with a bit of cucumber juice, lime juice & mint shaken with ice and served straight up.

Belvedere Grapefruit Vodka, agave nectar & lime juice served over ice with grapefruit or lemon slice garnish.

The quantities of each ingredient really depend on how many you're serving...or how strong you like your cocktail. Experiment with the ingredients and try to keep equal parts alcohol to mixer. Just make sure to choose the premium brands I've suggested (they do taste so much better). Shake well and enjoy... 

Keep following the Southern Sophisticate for more recipes and entertaining ideas, and please do share yours with me here...