Category Archives: Cocktails

Vodka Drinks: Simple, Clean, and Clear

Spring is moving quickly toward summer at the Villa, and a preference is seen in the Garden for drinks that are as clean and refreshing as the breeze. This is no time for cloyingly sweet mixes or anything that will give you a headache the next day!

That isn’t to say that care shouldn’t be taken, or consideration not given, to how these things are made. And that isn’t to say that it’s a difficult thing, just that some simple guidelines can make a simple pleasure even better.

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Tip Your Derby to a Derby

It’s one of the least appreciated cocktail ingredients out there, as far as I can tell: Bénédictine. Most of the time you won’t even see it on its own, but sold pre-mixed with brandy as B&B. Now, the idea of B&B is to use brandy to reduce the sweetness of the herbal liqueur, and generally I can understand that. But everything else gets adjustments like that when it gets used, so why not Bénédictine?

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Bracingly Pink

Last week’s highball, the Florodora, was described as being among the most refreshing summer drinks available. The Deep Blue Punch seems to be a popular one as well, judging by the number of people reading it here. One notes that they are both on the sweet side – the latter more so than the former.

This is no slight on them, certainly, since they don’t overdo it. And make no mistake, your host (and Villa bartender) has no trouble enjoying drinks of whatever sweetness. But there is something to be said for the light, clean, and refreshing quality of a beverage which has very little sugar of any kind, or at least more tartness than sweetness.

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