January 14, 2010

Matt the farm-fresh cocktail man

While in LA we went out for drinks with our pal hedge and wound up at the Library Bar in the Hollywood Roosevelt hotel. Hedge met Matt the bartender at the farmer's market that morning by happenstance and when we suggested drinks she had just the place to try.

A sampling of Matt's creations:

- umami manhattan: shiitake infused Basil Hayden bourbon, bitters, italian cherry

- arugula gimlet: arugula, mint, lime, sugar, Hendrick's gin

- Last Tango in Modena: strawberries, balsamic, Hendrick's, with St. Germain foam

- vanilla Basil Hayden, ginger beer, lime, sugar, mint

- wo kaffir lime drinks.... one with cherry liqueur foam -- we'd prefer an orange foam or no foam in that one. I much preferred the kaffir lime, Hendrick's, coconut milk thing he whipped up for the folks next to us (he gave us a sample).

We got a couple tastes of his saffron vodka and fresh coconut/pineapple rum, both quite interesting and complex.

And then he whipped up a new drink on the spot based on a single phrase: Just The Tip. This ended up being a multi-part extravaganza in a nipped-waist vessel, with a 20 yr Pappy Van Winkle old fashioned in the bottom, followed by a cherry to block the narrow part of the glass, then lemon, sugar, aperol, and possibly vodka in the top section, with cherry foam on just the tip. Insane. Awesome.

Posted by foodnerd at January 14, 2010 10:04 PM
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