Sip on this season's haute new libations, from wine cocktails to fizzy bottled daiquiris
Jasper's Corner Tap (401 Taylor, SF. (415) 775-7979, www.jasperscornertap.com) bar manager Kevin Diedrich just started bottling his own Pimm's Cup. A vivid orange, it goes down bright and bold with cucumber, ginger, lemon, Pimm's, soda, and the no-longer-secret ingredient: a hint of fresh strawberry. Diedrich's little bottled beauties border on addictive. I wish I could stock them at home.
Sampling through spring menus I've noticed this old trend getting fresh life. At Wo Hing (584 Valencia, SF. (415) 552-2510, www.wohinggeneralstore.com), bar manager Brooke Arthur's new spring cocktails include a Cynar spritzer made from the Italian artichoke liqueur and Plymouth Gin, alongside Punt e Mes vermouth, cava, orange bitters, lemon peel, and a pinch of salt. This dark, earthy, red refresher is blissfully bitter, bright, and invigorating. The salt enhances flavors, the bubbles impart texture.
Kevin Diedrich at Jasper's Corner Tap created a St. Helena fizz served tall in a Collins glass. This wine-based cocktail is blessedly light on the alcohol — perfect for a mid-day imbibing. It uses Newton Chardonnay, St. Germain elderflower, Benedictine, Peychaud's bitters, Bitter Truth grapefruit bitters, and soda. It's like a mini-escape to wine country.
Kate Bolton of Maven (598 Haight, SF. (415) 829-7982, www.maven-sf.com) created a unique wine aperitif in Global Warming. Dry riesling features, but also sake, even a splash of Ransom's Old Tom gin. Tart with lemon, a little scoop of absinthe sorbet permeates the drink as it melts. Who says vino and hard alcohol don't mix?