Edible Monterey Bay's pop-up brunch at Ventana Inn and Spa [click to read my blogpost on the event], I was dazzled by their selection of morning cocktails.
I have to admit that I have never seen such a unique selection of brunch libations; I had a tough time deciding. There was, of course, the de rigueur bellini and ubiquitous mimosa. But it was the more innovative offerings that intrigued me. I vacillated between the St. Germain Royal—Roederer Brut with St. Germain elderflower liqueur, and a lime wheel—and the Hair of the Dog Punsch—lemon-infused Zaya rum with spiced black tea.
In the end I opted for the Hair of the Dog Punsch; punsch—with its seemingly errant “s”—is not actually a typo. I was initially reluctant to order it because rum cocktails are notoriously syrupy sweet, but I couldn’t resist the name. The concoction turned out to be surprisingly spicy and slightly bitter. It was quite enjoyable but a vivid contrast to the chilled, effervescent St. Germain that I sampled by sneaking a sip from my friend’s champagne flute. Thanks, Ulla.
St. Germain is a sweet, artisanally-crafted liqueur from elderberry flowers. The distinctive flavor reminds me of a blend of peach, grapefruit, pear and lychee. The liqueur recipe dates back to a Parisian company from 1884.
Last night I poured 1/2 ounce into the bottom of a champagne flute, topped it off with an Italian prosecco, and garnished it with fresh strawberries from Fogline Farm.
Jake asked, "What are we celebrating?"
Life, my love. Just life.