Posts Tagged ‘gin’

Gin with style: Nolet’s

I used to hate gin. The juniper berries turned me off. But I’ve had a change of heart, what with the abundance of quality mixology in the L.A. area, as well as the emergence of good spirits, including Ketel One vodka maker Nolet’s, which comes with a variety of interesting infusions.

At a Nolet’s cocktail-and-dinner pairing at FIG in the Fairmont Miramar Hotel in Santa Monica, I sampled Nolet’s Silver Dry Gin, which has Turkish rose, peach and raspberry notes and was used in cocktails designed by FIG’s mixologist, Tavis Alexander. My favorite was the beet-based drink, which is now available at FIG. Here are the recipes of Alexander’s cocktails from the dinner:

Beet Me Loud
1 oz. Nolet’s Silver Dry Gin
0.5 oz. beet juice
0.75 oz. apple syrup
0.5 oz. lime juice
Absinthe spray glass
Shake all ingredients, strain over ice and serve in a rocks glass.

Mandarin Fizz
2 oz. Nolet’s Silver Dry Gin
0.75 oz. lemon juice
0.75 oz. simple syrup
1 egg white
Angostura bitters
6 tangerine segments
Zest tangerine
Shake all ingredients, double strain into a mini pilsner glass and garnish with dashes of bitters.

Palisades Coffee
1 oz. Nolet’s Silver Dry Gin
0.5 oz. root liquor
0.5 oz. Benedictine
1 oz. espresso
0.5 oz. cream
0.25 oz. simple syrup
Shake all ingredients, strain and serve up in a coupe glass.

Can’t make it to Santa Monica? I’ve seen Nolet’s at Bouchon Bistro’s bar in Beverly Hills, and mixologist Jaymee Mandeville of downtown’s Drago Centro has also put a Nolet’s drink on her seasonal menu:

Silver Solstice
1.25 oz Nolet’s Silver Dry Gin
0.5 oz maple syrup
0.5 oz fresh lemon juice
0.75 oz banana jam
4 peppercorns
Muddle or grind peppercorns, add all other ingredients over ice, shake and fine strain. Serve up in a martini glass and garnish with lemon twist.

Beet Me Loud

Beet Me Loud

While the Silver is most common, Nolet’s Reserve, with saffron and verbena notes, retails for about $600 a bottle and is the brainchild of distillery owner Carolus Nolet Sr., who personally tastes every batch before it’s bottled. I got to taste some of this pricey liquid, and it is definitely spicy, just as it was described to those of us at the dinner. I think I actually prefer the Silver, which is a good thing since it seems to be popping up more often around Los Angeles.

Note: The meal and cocktails at FIG were hosted.

29

05 2012

Favorites from the L.A. Street Food Fest

As I’ve previously written, this year’s L.A. Street Food Fest was held at the Rose Bowl, and it was a fun and flavorful event. I had a really great time. Unfortunately for the organizers, it was held over Carmageddon weekend when a portion of the 405 freeway was shut down, and that affected attendance. However, the lack of a big crowd and long lines probably contributed to my enjoyment, so it was a catch 22. I hope it all evens out next year!

Here were some of my favorite bites from this year’s event.

Baja Bites

Sea Urchin Tostada by Sabina Bandera of La Guerrerense

Sea Urchin Tostada by Sabina Bandera of La Guerrerense

Pacific Oyster Asada w/ chicharron short rib, serrano ponzu butter, lemongrass foam by Javier Plascencia of Mision 19

Pacific Oyster Asada w/ chicharron short rib, serrano ponzu butter, lemongrass foam by Javier Plascencia of Mision 19

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01

08 2011

Pretty, scene-y: Fig & Olive Melrose Place

View from the upstairs bar at Fig & Olive

A week ago (I know, I know — I’m behind!), the New York-based, olive oil-centric restaurant Fig & Olive opened its flagship West Coast location at the trendy corner of La Cienega Boulevard and Melrose Place. It was a scene, my friends: three nights of people in cocktail attire walking a red carpet complete with a step and repeat, as well as fashion presentations by Cholé and Fendi. All that for a restaurant opening!

To be fair, the restaurant is housed in a pretty awesome space: it’s huge, and features rosemary bushes and an olive tree in the main dining room. There’s even an upstairs space, which houses the Fig Champagne & Cocktail Bar, unique to the L.A. location.

Fig & Olive’s thing is olive oil, which it uses in place of butter in nearly all its dishes. You can even buy bottles of its special infused versions at the restaurant (blood orange-infused olive oil, anyone?). The cuisine is inspired by the Mediterranean, and that means the entire region, including France, Italy and Spain.

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11

03 2011

Old school glamour, food and drink: The Tar Pit

Gin Gin Mule

Gin Gin Mule

The Tar Pit, the much-anticipated new bar and restaurant from chef Mark Peel and general manager Jay Perrin, both of Campanile fame, and noted mixologist Audrey Saunders of Pegu Club in New York, made its debut late last week, and what a debut it was. From the 1940s art moderne decor (the simpler version of art deco) to the era-appropriate food and drink, The Tar Pit is a nice respite from the dark, often cramped, speakeasy style that has been popular among bars lately.

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12 2009