Posted by: Matt Browner Hamlin | October 24, 2008

Enjoying Domaine de Canton

I didn’t get around to reviewing any of the things I have on my plate for reviews, but I did have a pretty great time last night at the Tabard Inn. Chantal Tseng was behind the bar and it’s clear that she’s enjoying working with Domaine de Canton ginger liquor.

Let me stop for a moment and put out my previous disclaimer: I’m new to this and failed to take notes on what I was drinking. Plans for this weekend include getting a danged notebook.

I started off with a Ginger Aperitivi, which if I recall correctly was the Domaine de Canton, Averna Amaro, San Pellegrino Chinotto, and fresh orange juice. It was light and delightful, with the spice of the ginger and the herbs of the Amaro blending well with the sweetness of the juice and soda. I could really enjoy a few of these on a hot summer afternoon, but I think the Domaine de Canton’s ginger makes it a great fall drink too.

sazerac_ginger

Tabard Inn Sazerac w/Domaine de Canton

The rest of the way, I was drinking a Sazerac made with Domaine de Canton. At this point I was sitting upstairs with friends so I didn’t see Chantal make the drink. I’m curious as to whether she substituted the Domaine de Canton for another ingredient or whether she simply added to the recipe. I’ll have to ask her next time I’m at the Tabard Inn. The Domaine is fairly sweet and I wonder if it could stand in for sugar, but now I’m just speculating. The point is that it was a fantastic twist on a classic cocktail.

Going back a bit in time, I want to pass along another modified classic using Domaine de Canton. The classic hotel cocktails seminar, also at the Tabard Inn, featured the addition of the ginger liquor to a Vieux Carre. Thus, the Nouveau Carre:

Nouveau Carre Cocktail

3/4 oz rye whiskey
3/4 ox Domaine de Canton ginger liquor
3/4 oz Italian (sweet) vermouth
3/4 oz Cognac
1/8 oz Benedictine
2 dashes Angostura bitters
2 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
Build drink in rocks glass with ice, garnish with lemon peel.

The point of this post is that Domaine de Canton is proving to be a great source of inspiration for new, interesting cocktails. I didn’t mention it yesterday, but one of the cocktails Adam Bernbach made for me Wednesday night at Bar Pilar involved a rhum agricole and the Domaine de Canton (the rest of the ingredients escape me). I only have a small sample bottle of the Domaine de Canton at home, but given the successes I’ve enjoyed with it so far, I’m going to see if I can track some down in DC (I’m not sure if it’s on sale in the District yet or not).

In the mean time, I highly recommend swinging by Tabard Inn or Bar Pilar for some great cocktails built with Domaine de Canton.

Update:

It’s worth mentioning that the picture of the sazerac above was taken with my iPhone’s crappy camera and completely fails to convey the beautiful color of the drink. It had a bright orange/peach hue, lighter than rye but with yellow tones similar to the lemon peel. Simply gorgeous.

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