In light of our recent article with Bar Chef Al ex from Wildcraft, we wanted to continue the trend of highlighting our incredible bar teams. This time, we’re taking a look at the original midtown restaurant, The Bauer Kitchen, and interviewing Bar Chefs Kim & Lindsay about their process and developing the new cocktail menu, launching April 21st, 2016. The menu can be viewed h ere.
Left: Red Sangria (Peller Estates Cab/Merlot, sour raspberry liqueur, cherry brandy, house-roasted cherry purée, cherry juice, lemon juice, garnished with mixed berries) / Right: Whtie Sangria (Peller Estates Riesling, St. Germaine Elderflower Liqueur, white cranberry juice, lime juice, soda, muddled cucumber, garnished with a cucumber ribbon) served in jars
How did you come up with the cocktail recipes?
This year we looked for big trends in what our guests were looking for and found that herbal cocktails and drinks inspired by the farm-to-table movement were extremely popular. Using this as a starting point, we researched online and in books for ideas that we had never done at TBK. After adding our own twists and flares, we properly crafted each cocktail, putting them through a long editing process and tweaking them where necessary. We are extremely proud of what we’ve created for our guests!
Can you explain the process of creating the new menu?
We begin by writing down what we think might taste good, imagination and inspiration are key at this point. We then think which ideas will be a favourite amongst our guests and what they might want while sitting on our patio. We then craft the cocktails and get servers opinions, until we believe we have come up with a winner. It is important that we include our team members because we want to be sure we are crafting a solid menu that we all believe in! Once budgeting has been approved, we have one final management taste test, get feedback and
Watermelon Margarita (tequila, St. Germaine Elderflower Liqueur, lime juice, house-made watermelon purée, garnished with a grilled lemon wheel)
Where do you go to research the cocktails?
We like to gain ideas from everywhere, whether it be an ingredient in a dish we are creating in our kitchen, researching different flavours and specific cocktail ingredients on the internet or by using cocktail books we have acquired over the years. We use everything as jumping-off points. The true excitement in crafting cocktails is piecing together new recipes or reworking the classics. It’s all about how we can make things fresh and new.
What fresh ingredients have you used in crafting the cocktails?
Our favourite ingredients are the basil, lemon, watermelon, cherry purée, honey, peppercorns, strawberries, lemongrass, cucumber, just to name a few… or was that too much (haha)? Like we said before, farm-to-table was very important to consider, so we use a lot of fresh ingredients in our recipes.
Basil Daiquiri (coconut rum, pineapple juice, lime juice, lemon juice, honey pepper simple syrup, muddled basil, garnished with a basil leaf)
What was your favourite drink to create?
For us, the favourite drink is the Marley with the honey pepper simple syrup! We found the syrup adds a slight kick to the drink, giving you a nice spicy floral mix.
Which drink was made to impress?
We think, either the Ginger Bomb (jäger, lime juice, ginger beer, muddled cucumber) or the Meringue Martini (lemongrass infused vodka, pineapple juice, lemon juice, egg whites) are very strong contenders. Both extremely refreshing, both extremely delicious!
Marley now with a lime wheel (spiced rum, honey pepper simple syrup, lime juice, grapefruit juice, soda, garnished with a lime wheel)
Left: Ginger Bomb (jäger, lime juice, ginger beer, muddled cucumber) / Right: Meringue Martini (lemongrass infused vodka, pineapple juice, lemon juice, egg whites)
Do you see any trends happening in the cocktail scene?
In the cocktail scene, we’re seeing a lot of herbal flavours, back to basics methods using ingredients and infusions found in nature and a revival of house-made syrups and bitters. At The Bauer Kitchen, we have been all over these trend for some time now. We make our own house syrups daily and a lot of our new cocktails have a nature-
What is "God's gift" to cocktails?
Simple, bitters are God’s gift! They can radically change a flavour profile of a drink, are simple to make and are literal liquid-chameleons, with the ability to take on so many different flavours.
Contributors: Kim Trompke, Lindsay Shields, Evin Lachance, Julie Glasgow & Cindy Perri
Photographer: Evin Lachance
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