Cool beans

Bartenders are embracing how the unique properties of cold brew works in cocktails

istockphoto.com photo

Your morning cup of coffee may perk you up nicely, but that same java is more than ready to do the same for your cocktail hour. Forget the drip-filled wine glass containing a shot of Bushmills or Tia Maria, loaded with sugar, and covered with a slick of whipped cream from a can. And step back from the classic, yet oh-so-1980s, Espresso Martini. Coffee cocktails have upped their game.

And what’s behind this fashionable return? It’s all about that barista favourite, cold brew.

Continue Reading

The Cosmopolitan

Our man at the bar, John Burns, on the seductive power of nomenclature

Illustration by Roxana Bikadoroff.

Names are my downfall. I’m just a sucker for them. For fanciful origin stories and tales of whimsy. The music of language spellbinds me, which is why I fall so often and so hard for the poetry of the label.

Take Bénédictine, that herbal liqueur purportedly invented by Norman monks. A cabal of French brothers whose order was founded by a Merovingian count in 658 AD created a secret recipe 500 years ago, then mislaid it when they fled the French Revolution. Come 1863, the industrialist Alexandre Le Grand — whose granddaughter Simone Beck would go on to co-author Mastering the Art of French Cooking — rediscovered (or made up) this proprietary mix of 27 botanicals and bottled it, sealing it with the gilded letters DOM: Deo Optimo Maximo, or “To God Most Good, Most Great.” Who could hear such an improbable yarn and stand unmoved?

Continue Reading

Local Negroni

Rob Scope’s Local Negroni uses four distillled-in-BC products. Lou Lou Child photo

• 0.25oz Sheringham Seaside Gin
• 0.5oz Odd Society Bittersweet Vermouth
• 0.5oz deVine Moderna Vermouth
• 0.75oz The Woods Amaro

Continue Reading

Beyond the scope

Whether you prefer your cocktails classic or bespoke, The Cascade Room’s Rob Scope has a drink for you

Rob Scope. Lou Lou Childs photo

Rob Scope knows his way around a bar. After being introduced to the trade in England, Scope has had a hand in creating some of Vancouver’s most sought-after cocktails at establishments such as Campagnolo, ReFuel, Calabash, Cassis Bistro and now, as bar manager, at The Cascade Room on Main.

“Our cocktail list is pretty aggressive,” he says of the 60-drink strong menu of classics he oversees. “Working with this back bar is a dream come true.”

Continue Reading

Cherry Bomb

Heering’s classic liqueur continues to inspire the world’s top mixologists

For close to 200 years, Heering Cherry Liqueur has been a staple behind the bar in any respectable drinking establishment. The original Cherry Brandy, created in 1818 by Danish purveyor Peter F. Heering, the liqueur has gained a global reputation for its delicious, refined taste. The backbone of classic cocktails such as the Singapore Sling, the Copenhagen, and the Blood and Sand, Cherry Heering is sold in more than 100 countries worldwide.

Earlier this year, the iconic brand launched the 2016 Heering Classic Challenge, seeking to inspire the world’s greatest bartenders to take classic cocktails and reimagine them with Cherry Heering.

Continue Reading

A matter of taste

At Sheringham Distillery, Jason MacIsaac brings a chef’s palate to the still

David McIlvride photo

Twenty-three years in kitchens taught Jason MacIsaac all about balance. Bitter versus sweet, savoury versus salty, weight versus intensity—key principles in creating harmonious foods. Now, as founder, owner, operator, distiller and, along with his wife Alayne, every other possible role at Vancouver Island’s Sheringham Distillery, MacIssac has transposed those culinary skills to the still.

“As a chef, studying flavour profiles was my career,” he reflects. “Balancing flavours has been a passion. Every chef can start with the same ingredients but have vastly different outcomes. The same goes for distilling.”

Continue Reading