Challenge 1: Name three or more cocktails that use tequila as a base. If you can do that: a) you’re a good bartender; b) you’re a cocktail nerd; c) you’re looking things up on your smartphone; d) both b) and c). Challenge 2: Name one or more cocktails that incorporate sherry. If you can do that: see above. (Admittedly, I answered d) to both.)
Bar trivia aside, it’s rare to see tequila poured into anything other than a salt-rimmed glass or a shot here in the bourbon-soaked Southeast. It’s rarer still to see sherry used for anything other than making a mushroom sauce or getting your grandparents tipsy, but both deserve more respect as cocktail components. Tequila and sherry, that is — not your grandparents.
Cocktail writer Camper English summed up the relationship between these two ingredients in a way that should speak volumes to anyone who enjoys a Manhattan or a Rob Roy: “Sherry is to tequila as vermouth is to whiskey.” In a Feb. 20, 2011, San Francisco Chronicle article, English describes the love affair between tequila and sherry happening in more metropolitan parts of the country, and includes a recipe for the Del Rio by Josh Harris of the cocktail consultancy Bon Vivants, which I’ve adapted for this week’s drink, using ingredients I had at home.
Aside: Drinking sherry may not yet be trendy here, but there’s another southern place where it’s never gone out of style: Andalucia, Spain, where it’s been enjoyed chilled and paired with thinly sliced jamón for eons. We know a thing or two about cured pork and drinking around here, so who knows? Maybe it’ll catch on.
Meantime, if you’d like to try a good fino sherry, Morganelli’s wine buyer James Alford recommends the crisp, dry and nutty Tio Pepe fino muy seco (15
percent ABV, $16.99).
And now for a tequila and sherry cocktail, Josh Harris’ Del Rio:
1 1/2 oz. tequila plata (substitution: reposado)
3/4 oz. fino sherry
3/4 oz. St. Germain elderflower liqueur
3 dashes Angostura orange bitters (substitution: grapefruit bitters)
Place all liquid ingredients in a mixing glass. Add ice, stir for about 15 to 20 seconds and strain into a cocktail glass. Zest a small (1.5-inch) piece of grapefruit peel (substitution: clementine) over the drink, run it around the rim of the glass and drop into the drink.
Trustus Theatre Presents Evil Dead, The Musical
This musical version of Sam Raimi’s cult classic films promises to serve up more humor than horror. You can read more and purchase your tickets here.
A Healthy Happy Hour
4-7 p.m at Good Life Cafe on Main St. Try our $4 local draft beers, $4 organic wine, 1/2 off select bottles of house wine and $5 handcrafted house cocktails with juices cold pressed and made daily. Click here for more info.
The Castle Summer Camps
Clown Camp: Ages 7-12. Week of July 28 • Zombie Camp: Ages 10-15. Week of August 4. $125 per camp, discounts for siblings! 2076 Hwy Church Rd. 803-309-5586. TheEventCastle@yahoo.com
Happy Hour and Sushi Specials All Week
Red Bowl in Lexington now has great early bird and late night sushi specials 7 days a week, as well as 99-cent kids meals on Saturdays! Click here for special information and hours.
$7 Special Summer Menu at Tony’s Downtown
Stop in and try our special $7 summer menu (tax and drink included!) at Tony’s Pizza & Italian Eatery, downtown Columbia. 1120 Washington St., Suite 2.
Make your own beer and wine!
Come get started on your “liquid hobby” and help us celebrate our 46th year in the Columbia area. Bet Mar Liquid Hobby Shop, 736 St. Andrews Road. Click to find out how!
SEARCH FREE TIMES
Local restaurants serving locally grown food during Palmetto Tasty Tomato Restaurant Feast, July 11-18: