Cheers April/May 2018

Cheers is dedicated to delivering hospitality professionals the information, insights and data necessary to drive their beverage business by covering trends and innovations in operations, merchandising, service and training.

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Page 47 of 59 48 • April/May 2018 Healthful ingredients can add tonic to your drinks menu By Thomas Henry Strenk "Healthy-ish cocktails appeal to everyone," says Danny Kuehner, bar manager at Madison On Park restaurant in San Diego. Stashed behind the bar are such wellness ingredients as alkaline water, turmeric, matcha, beets, carrots, aloe vera, nopales, seaweed, cannabidiol (CBD) oil and activated charcoal. "People want to feel good, not only about what they are eating, but what they are drinking." Cocktails as healthful? Sounds like a contradiction. But consider history: Apothecaries originally compounded alcohol into healthful tinctures, elixirs and tonics. And compared to drinks in the 1980s that used artifi cially fl avored mixers with way too much sweetener, today's fresh- ingredient cocktails are natural and refreshing. Plus, the current proliferation of low-ABV creations offers more wholesome quaffs. Bartenders often look to the kitchen for inspiration, which is where the health-food angle fi ts. When writing menus, chefs today focus on organic and sustainable ingredients, preferably locally sourced. And of course, drink lists that call out the latest superfood or unusual, arcane ingredients attract the attention of curious consumers thirsting for the new and novel. "Bartenders love stealing ideas and ingredients from kitchens, and if the kitchen trends or what people are asking for gears itself towards health foods, then that's how we're going to lean into it," says Jenn Harvey, bar manager at Temple Bar in Cambridge, MA. Items borrowed from health food for cocktails include carrot juice, chia seeds, cacao nibs and turmeric. SUNDAY'S RETREAT, a cocktail at Seamstress restaurant and lounge in New York, com- bines chai-tea-infused Bacardi Ocho rum, St. Germain elderfl ower liqueur, lemon juice and cherry preserves with fl oats of kombucha and prosecco.

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