Call this the month of reckoning. After a festive season of giddy indulgence, many of us are rediscovering the gym, swapping shortbread for lentils, and giving up booze throughout the 31 long, dark days of January.
Well, thank goodness that’s over. This past year was enough to drive a person to drink. Luckily, the city’s best bartenders know just what we’re craving right now and in the year ahead. Here are the top-five cocktail trends they say we’ll be enjoying in 2017. Cheers!
Friendship, a fun attitude, and a shared love of booze inspired Kelly Woods and John McLellan to start their Squamish-based still. Their spirits are designed to be cocktail friendly.
8-38918 Progress Way, Squamish
• Aphro Chocolate Chili Elixir
• Gastown Shine Wheat Vodka
• Sin Gin
Gastown Shine Wheat Vodka
FRAGRANCE: Clean aroma of sweet wheat, hints of vanilla.
FLAVOUR: Very smooth; light sweetness, slightly nutty.
FEEL: Light-bodied with a creamy mouthfeel.
FINISH: Lingering notes of vanilla bean and white blossom.
BEST ENJOYED: Ideal for a very smooth and clean Martini or Vesper.
THE BOTTOM LINE: Perfect choice if you like a clean and subtle vodka. —Wendy McGuinness, April 2016
FRAGRANCE: Cold lozenges, lemon sorbet.
FLAVOUR: Bittersweet, fragrant lemon, pithy.
FEEL: Thin on the palate.
FINISH: Lasting pithy citrus.
BEST ENJOYED: Serve over ice, after dinner.
THE BOTTOM LINE: The colour is a bit jarring, but this is a cool local digestif. —Shaun Layton, July 2016
FRAGRANCE: Raspberry yoghurt, citrus zest.
FLAVOUR: Gin first, with some fresh raspberry.
FEEL: Dry, clean. A bit boozier than most liqueurs.
FINISH: Mellow, a touch sweet but still balanced.
BEST ENJOYED: In a Clover Club. Too easy? As a Martini with bianco vermouth and a lemon twist.
THE BOTTOM LINE: A good one to try if you like fruitier cocktails and don’t have a huge selection of booze. Well made. —Josh Pape, February 2017
FRAGRANCE: Green and sharp.
FLAVOUR: Woodsy, pine-tree spice.
FEEL: Pleasantly warm and mouth coating.
FINISH: Slight honey sweetness and a lingering peppery finish.
BEST ENJOYED: In a Last Word cocktail.
THE BOTTOM LINE: A robust, London Dry-style gin. —Robyn Gray, July 2017