Friday, September 16, 2011

pacific swizzle

2 oz White Rum infused with rosehips, lemon grass, and hibiscus tea (*)
1/2 oz Lime Juice
1/4 oz Passion Fruit Purée

Add to a tall glass filled with ice. Swizzle to mix and chill. Garnish with a pansy flower and add a straw.
(*) The rum is infused with Tazo brand Passion tisane which contains hibiscus flowers, orange peel, rosehips, cinnamon, lemongrass, licorice, and red poppy. For an infusion time and concentration, perhaps the instructions for Audrey Sander's Earl Grey Marteani can be a starting point.
After departing Vandaag, I decided to make Lani Kai in SoHo my next destination. When I walked in, I was surprised that behind the bar was April Wachtel who used to work at the Gallows here in Boston! April was stunned as well and asked what I was doing at Lani Kai as well as where else I had gone. I replied that I was stalking her, and that I had just come from Vandaag. She laughed and mentioned that she also was doing a few shifts there too. When April inquired if I knew that she worked at Lani Kai, I replied no; I explained that I picked it as I was impressed with the drinks that Julie Reiner and others from Lani Kai made at the William & Grant party at Tales of the Cocktail two months before. A few weeks ago when April told me that she was leaving Boston for New York, she was very vague about where she would be working as she had a few options she was going to explore to see what would be a good fit. While it turns out that this was only her second training shift at the bar, it did seem like Lani Kai was a good match for her. Indeed, it was quite serendipitous and great to see a familiar face behind the bar.
For my first drink, I decided to order something off of the happy hour menu. The concept of a happy hour was quite the novelty since Massachusetts does not allow bars and restaurants to offer alcoholic beverages at lower prices (they can offer food specials though). The special that called out to me was the Pacific Swizzle which utilized a rum infused with passion fruit, floral, and spice elements. Moreover, the rum's fruit notes were intensified by a passion fruit purée. The hibiscus and red poppy in the infused rum were complemented by further floral notes donated by the pansy garnish in the aroma. On the sip, the Swizzle was full of floral and passion fruit flavors, and the swallow contained the lime's crispness, the tisane's tannin and rosehip notes, and the rum.

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