I try to surround myself with people who care about me as much as I care about them. People who can take one look at you and know how you're feeling, and do their best to make you feel better. Hopefully they know that given the chance I would have their back, too. One person who plays that role in my world, and probably doesn't even know she's that important...talk about altruism....is Suzanne, the master of mixing and my favorite bartender...EVER...who plies her witchcraft at Café Castagna here in PDX. I can stop by after a crazy night at our Friday tastings at the wine shack, and she instinctively knows exactly what I need to regain equilibrium (read: blood alcohol level).
She started me on the perfectly potent, tart-sweet Hendrick's Gimlet a couple of years ago, and it has rocketed to near the top of my favorite refreshing adult beverage list, coming in right behind the national drink of wineguyworld, the Negroni, and pushing an exquisite Tanqueray martini hard for second place. Mine at home don't quite reach the levels of perfection that I have at Castagna. After all, Suzanne has set the bar...and her bar...pretty high. But in a pinch at home when the need strikes, these work just fine!
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2 oz. Hendrick's Gin
1 oz. fresh squeezed lime juice
3/4 oz simple syrup ( to make syrup put 1/2 cup water
Fill cocktail shaker with ice, add ingredients, shake very well, and strain into martini glass. Garnish with lime wedge.
Note: You can use any gin, but Hendricks just seems to have that perfectly balanced floral-herbal character that works magic here.