Spring has sprung, and there's no better way to celebrate the beginning of the season than with St-Germain. Made from handpicked elderflowers native to France, it makes an elegant addition whether you’re planning a romantic picnic for two or partying outdoors with friends. Its subtle flavor allows it to pair easily with complementary spirits. A classic celebratory pairing combines St-Germain with Champagne, but bartenders in Portland are using it with more than just bubbly. Vodka, gin, rye, rum, tequila and bourbon all play well with St-Germain. See Eater’s map of where to find St-Germain in and out of the bottle. À votre santé!
With its deep cocktail list focusing on both classics and new creations, the laid-back Teardrop Lounge provides the perfect spot for a post-work unwinding session. Bar manager Sean Hoard and owner Daniel Shoemaker reach for the St-Germain to create subtle-but-complex flavors in cocktails like the Artistant, Dalliance, and the Venial Sin, the latter of which Shoemaker calls “an exercise in restraint... with incremental amounts of everything besides the tequila, [it shows] that a drink is more than the sum of its parts.” The Venial sin offers a luxurious mosaic of flavors. “While the tequila and mezcal create a vegetal and mineral base note, and the chartreuse gives it an herbal expanse,” Shoemaker says, “the floral elegance of the St-Germain folds like a double helix around the Thai chili note to rise on the mid-palate toward a cascading finish.” Luxurious indeed.
1.5 oz. Blanco Tequila
.5 oz. Mezcal
.5 oz. Yellow Chartreuse
.25 oz. Maraschino Liquer
.25 oz. St. Germain
3 drops house Thai chili tincture
For the chili tincture:
3/4 lb. of thai chiles
2 C overproof demerera rum
Wear rubber gloves. (“If possible, wear another pair over the first,” Shoemaker says. “Seriously.”) Remove stems from all chiles and cut them in half, keeping all the seeds intact. Stuff a one-quart mason jar with the chiles, top with the rum, and seal tightly. Agitate the jar daily for three weeks. Strain well and bottle.
To create the cocktail, stir all ingredients with ice, strain, and serve in a coupe.