Stalking Spring’s Sweetness

Stalking Spring’s Sweetness
Photo by Vairdy Frail

Rhubarb brings local notes to a classic cocktail

When the crocus rears its colourful head and we trade skis for bikes, the season of renewal is here. This twist on the French 75 celebrates the new season with something fresh from the majestic bounty of the Pacific Northwest. Say au revoir to lemons and Champagne, and build this seasonal, local version of the classic cocktail instead. The first shoots of rhubarb step in as a substitute for the tangy quality of the lemon. Used in moderation, rhubarb’s intensity adds just a subtle hint here, along with a splash of colour. The rhubarb strawberry cordial from Squamish-based Frost Bites Syrup Co. uses Pemberton Valley rhubarb and takes the place of simple syrup, adding a tantalizing sweet-tart boost.

Montis Distilling makes two gins, offering a pair of options for the drink. The Alpine Gin, made with botanicals foraged from around Whistler, imparts forest-like character with emphasis on juniper and conifer notes, while the Alpenglow Gin’s citrus focus brings floral, botanical vibes.

Topped off with B.C. sparkling, the Sea to Sky 75 hints at the new opportunities, fresh starts and sunny days soon on their way.

Sea to Sky 75

  • 1 ounce Montis Gin (either Alpine or Alpenglow)
  • ¾ ounce Frost Bites Syrup Co. Rhubarb Strawberry Cordial
  • 5 centimetres rhubarb, chopped into 6 to 8 small pieces, plus a long, thin ribbon for garnish
  • 3 ounces Blue Mountain Brut Rosé

In a cocktail shaker, combine gin, cordial and chopped rhubarb with ice. Shake until well chilled and then strain contents into a tall flute. Fill the glass the rest of the way with sparkling wine and garnish with ribbon of rhubarb.

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