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Keep Up With the Joneses With These Cocktail Trends 2014: Part 2

August 21, 2014 at 4:04 PM | by | ()

As Week 2 of HotelChatter Cocktail Week(s) wraps up, here's our second run-down of some of the things we see going on in the world of hotel bars and bevvies. What do you see goin’ on out there? Let us know in the comments below!

Roll Out the Barrel(aging) –
One trend that is growing stronger this year is in-house barrel-aged and private label spirits. We're envisioning cask-aged moonshine made in a mad scientist-type laboratory.

Jeff Josenhans at THE US GRANT in San Diego is producing an in-house barrel-aged Chartreuse with Wayne Geiselman, who has a PH D in Food Science. Using complex-sounding reverse engineering, food scientist Wayne created a proprietary blend of 25 local, organic ingredients including Southern California wildflower honey. Jeff then took this botanical blend and an un-aged bourbon to use as the spirit base (as opposed to traditional European brandy), and is now aging this noble experiment in 100% New Allier French Oak (never done before in the cocktail world). Six-month, 1-year, and 2-year-old bottlings will be ready to open on October 15. If you want to stay over for the big unveiling, you're looking at rates starting at $239.

The Dorchester has revived the historical recipe for Old Tom Gin to create a newer, bolder blend exclusive to the hotel. The City of London Distillery has the weight of distilling the gin under the watchful eye of the hotel’s bar manager and expert alchemist, Giuliano Morandin. This is the second time Giuliano has re-introduced Old Tom Gin to the UK drinks market, the first being in 2006 after a 30-year absence. To celebrate the re-launch, Giuliano has created the Old Tom Cobbler cocktail, made with coriander, fresh lemongrass, elderflower and, not surprisingly, Old Tom. A 700ml bottle of The Dorchester Old Tom Gin is priced at £65 ($109) and is available at The Bar at The Dorchester or by visiting shop.dorchestercollection.com. Signature cocktails including the Old Tom Cobbler start at £16 ($27). Stays start at £505 ($838).

These Cocktails Sure Do French Press Us –
During Prohibition times, barmen were both crafty and ingenious. Many used the innocent-looking French Press instead of a cocktail shaker to muddle their mixes, hoping to conceal the true contents within. Using Prohibition-style teacups to serve, Omni Mount Washington Resort offers Prohibition Punch in The Cave, made with Russian Earl Grey Tea, Bailey’s Irish Cream and a splash of whiskey. The Cave's the real thing, too. Built in 1902, the hotel’s squash courts were converted to an underground bar during Prohibition. Guests drank spiritus liquors out of teacups in The Cave while others kept watch in a back room to monitor any officials coming up the driveway. Please note that prices have gone up since Prohibition, and the cocktail is now $9.00. A stay starts at $369.

Surf & Sand Laguna Beach is also in on the French Press trend; they’re making Fresh Sips for Two at Splashes Bar. By using the French Press you get two drinks instead of one, so yes, you can share, or you can just have a back-up. For summer – because no, it’s not over yet! – try their Cucumber Mint Gimlet and/or the Fresh Raspberry Martini for Two for $24. A stay starts at $540.

Summer With Shandy –
Hotels recognize that beer is a popular summer thirst-quencher, and many of them are giving that beer bottle a shake to see what else they can do with it.

Since Coronas mean summer fun in many circles, Carson’s Cup ($12) from Mexicado at Hyatt Regency Aruba contains this key ingredient. Also included in the mix is Herradura Blanco, grapefruit juice, lime juice, tamarind syrup, and a garnish of raspberries.

In New York, The Marlton Hotel’s Margaux is serving the Pamplemousse Shandy ($14) made with Grapefruit Hefeweizen, Aperol, tequila and lime, garnished with a candied grapefruit. The cocktail creator, Bartender Chris O’Neill, said, “The Pamplemousse Shandy is great for sippin’ or swillin’ day or night.” Stays start at $395.

La Concha Resort in San Juan has a Nectarine Caipirinha ($12) that looks divine, with Leblon, fresh lemon-lime juice, fresh nectarine juice, and is topped with a splash of soda. Stays starts at $199.

The Caicos Beer Shandy ($11) comes from Stelle Beach Bar & Grill at Gansevoort Turks + Caicos. This concoction is made with chilled, local Turks Head Beer, ginger beer, fresh ginger, lime wheel, local Bambarra Black Bark Rum and an orange peel twist. Stays start at $695.

[Photos: The US Grant; The Dorchester; Omni Mount Washington; Surf & Sand Laguna Beach; La Concha Resort; The Marlton Hotel; Hyatt Regency Aruba; Gansevoort Turks + Caicos]

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