A pretty drink to put you in the pink

Pink & Pretty is just one of several new cocktails created by Trevor Kallies of Freehouse Collective. Photo courtesy of Freehouse Collective.

This is the season of celebrations—weddings, graduations, Mother’s Day, coronations—and that makes it a season that cries out for something pretty and sparkly in a glass. Luckily, Trevor Kallies, the bar and beverage director of Freehouse Collective, has just what we’re craving.

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Our favourite summer cocktail offers the perfect canvas for artful variations

The Coconut and Mint Margarita from Monarca. Nora Hamade photo

The Margarita is a splash of happiness, the quintessential summer cocktail and one of the most popular drinks in the world. Whether you like it frozen or on the rocks, in a pre-dinner coupette, a plastic cup poolside or poured from a pitcher, it’s a classic that hits all the right notes with the bitterness of tequila, the tartness of fresh lime, the sweetness of orange liqueur and the salt, which heightens all the flavours. 

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Hibiscus Maragarita

Ruben Nava Mendoza photo

• 1.5 oz tequila 1800 blanco

• 1.5 oz fresh lemon juice

• 0.5 oz Cointreau or other triple sec 

• 0.5 oz hibiscus syrup (see note)

• Garnish: Dried hibiscus flower

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Jalapeño Margarita

Photo courtesy of El Camino’s

• 2 oz jalapeño-infused reposado tequila (see note)

• 1 oz lime juice

• 0.5 oz agave water (2 parts agave syrup to 3 parts water)

• Garnish: Tajín Clásico Seasoning rim

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Spicy Tamarind Mezcal Margarita

Ruben Nava Mendoza photo

• 1 oz tamarind syrup (see note)

• 1.5 oz mezcal 

• 0.5 oz lime juice

• 0.5 oz Cointreau 

• 0.5 oz agave syrup

• Dash habanero bitters

• Garnish: Tajín Clásico Seasoning for rim, dehydrated lime wheel

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Coconut & Mint Margarita

Coconut & Mint Margarita. Nora Hamade photo

• 2 oz tequila reposado

• 0.75 oz pineapple syrup

• 1 oz coconut syrup

• 0.25 oz triple sec

• 1.5 oz fresh lime juice

• 3 mint leaves

• Garnish: Salt or Tajín Clasico seasoning for rim; slice of dried pineapple and pineapple leaf

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The cocktail matchmakers

Nikka brings Coffey, chemistry, and collaboration to Vancouver Cocktail Week

Nikka’s Coffey range demonstrates the versatility of the column still. Photo courtesy of The Nikka Whisky Distilling Co.

When B.C.-based importers Enoteca Bacco first approached the Nikka Whisky Distilling Co. to participate in Vancouver Cocktail Week, it was an immediate and enthusiastic “yes.”   

“We wanted to create a unique experience … and add excitement for the people of Vancouver,” says Naomi Kamiyama, the global marketing and sales department representative for Nikka Whisky. “The first thing that came to mind was to bring one of our favourite bars, Bar Trench, to Vancouver. We also knew that The Keefer Bar is one of the most amazing bars in the world, and if these two fantastic bars could collaborate, their chemistry would deliver something memorable.”

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Broke and Famous

Broke and Famous cocktail. Reece Sims photo

Crafted by Bar Trench and featured during their guest shift at The Keefer Bar, this is a unique cocktail with a slight bitterness and fruity paprika note, featuring Nikka’s savoury Coffey Grain whisky. “We loved this cocktail from Bar Trench so much, we’ve added it to our reserve list!” —The Keefer Bar

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