On the grapevine
Discover what people are saying about Farmer’s Table in the news and find out the latest happenings.
Spectacular Craft Cocktails
If you’re seeking a freshly-shaken and stirred tropical libation, The Palm Beaches feature a dazzling array of craft cocktails to wet your whistle and inspire “likes” on your Instagram feed. The area’s culinary scene is sizzling with fresh flavors, and skillful mixologists are also showcasing their talents withwildly inventive drinks.
“Wherever you visit in The Palm Beaches, you’re bound to come across a unique craft cocktail menu — everything from reimagined classics, to totally out-of-the-box ideas that make your taste buds do a double take,” said Shaina Wizov, a Boca Raton-based food blogger who writes about her passion for the local culinary scene in Take a Bite Out of Boca. “What’s especially cool is how, just like restaurants keep their menu ingredients fresh and seasonal, bartenders are doing the same with their drinks.”
“A perfectly-crafted cocktail takes the same creative approach, precision and follow-through as any well-crafted plate of food,” Wizov continued. “If a restaurant takes the time to perfect the dishes on their menu, you can expect it to ensure their cocktails live up to the same standards. I’m all for restaurants that excel in both food and drink.”
For foodies who find themselves in the northern part of The Palm Beaches,Salute Market in Palm Beach Gardens has made a name for itself as a restaurant, liquor store and boutique market with local vendor products. Described as “comfy chic,” the restaurant prides itself on having a “Napa Valley meets Palm Beach” feel.
Beverage Director and Mixologist Angela Santo Domingo said The Flying Fig is one of the restaurant’s most popular cocktails. “It’s made with one of my favorite bourbons: Buffalo Trace,” she said. “The inspiration for this cocktail was to utilize some flavors from our Ohio hometown of Cleveland, which are not typically seen here in The Palm Beaches. We were looking to create a drink that’s full bodied, but very easy to drink.”
“Our chef makes the house-made fig simple syrup, and we use sweet vermouth, the Buffalo Trace bourbon, and then top it with black walnut bitters,” said Santo Domingo. “Black walnuts are indigenous to Ohio, and the bitters add a great level of complexity and somewhat savory umami-like flavors to the drink. The fig syrup brings a nice amount of sweetness, and all of this works well with the oak and vanilla notes from the bourbon. Guests love this drink because it’s different, but the flavors are so approachable.”
For visitors who seek a Florida-esque libation, Café Boulud at The Brazilian Court Hotel in Palm Beach offers a festive and fruity concoction. Celebrated Chef Daniel Boulud’s restaurant has made its name as a must for before-dinner drinks, with a creative new cocktail list and recently re-envisioned space.
“Our Pineapple Smash cocktail is the best version of a piña colada,” explained Jason Lakow, general manager for the posh restaurant. “It’s made with two different kinds of tropical rums—Stiggins Plantation Pineapple and Oak & Palm Coconut.”
“We throw in a little island spice to pay homage to Palm Beach,” Lakow continued. “You’ll also taste almond syrup and John Taylor’s Velvet Falernum, which has limitless possibilities in mixology. This unique liqueur combines flavors of lime, almond, vanilla, ginger, and clove. The finished drink is refreshing, spiced and tastes like you are biting into a pineapple — exactly what you want to be drinking when you come to The Palm Beaches.”
Palm Beach is home to another option for visitors looking for an exceptional cocktail. Mixologist Nathan Belovitch of Jové Kitchen & Bar at Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach, nicknamed “Nate,” created the resort guests’ most highly-requested cocktail. It’s called in honor of him: “Nate’s Guest.” The drink, made with Tito’s vodka, Pomegranate juice, muddled basil and blueberries, packs a flavorful punch.
“It’s a refreshing beverage, clean and perfect for our year-round al fresco weather,” said Belovitch. “The basil is straight from our own bartenders’ garden, located right outside of Jové Kitchen & Bar. The herb gives the drink a fresh flavor.”
Also on Palm Beach, Meat Market bills itself as a “more glamorous take on the traditional steak house.” Mixologist Ezra Pattek says the restaurant’s cocktail menu is a reflection of their guests.
“We are constantly talking to people about the drinks they like, or drinks they would like to see more of,” said Pattek. “We find that the Palm Beach crowd is really embracing the craft cocktail culture, and they’re excited with how the scene has evolved in recent years. In a market like Palm Beach, martinis are still king, but we’re seeing our guests become more adventurous with their drink selections. Similar to our Chef Sean Brasel’s approach with food, we source fresh, local ingredients for our bar program and develop cocktails that are perfect complements to the menu. For summer, we are rolling out a lot of exciting new cocktails, but one that stands out to me is the La Piña de Oro, which translates to ‘the Golden Pineapple.’ The drink uses Ancho Reyes Ancho Chile Liqueur, mezcal with banana and pineapple– it’s refreshing and tropical, with a touch a heat and smokiness.”
Keith Popejoy of Max’s Social House in Delray Beach has established a local following of fans who eagerly await his next intricate cocktail creation. Popejoy has bartended for a decade, during which time he began seriously studying the science of mixology.
“Our drink, called ‘I’m Your Huckleberry’, is a very popular option,” he said. “I named it in reference to a scene in the ‘Tombstone’ movie. Guests usually are taken by its appearance. Typically, you’ll hear someone say it tastes as good as it looks!”
“The cocktail is bright and sweet, yet has quite a booze factor to it,” Popejoy continued. “Essentially, it’s a huckleberry pisco sour, utilizing Vilya Spirits Wild Huckleberry Liqueur and Velvet Falernum. This sour is made traditionally, with an egg white shaken inside the cocktail for a creamy mouthfeel and a nice froth at the top of the glass.”
New restaurant Jardin, created by rising star newlywed chefs Jordan Lerman and Stephanie Cohen, is now open in the historical heart of downtown West Palm Beach on Clematis Street. The restaurant’s craft cocktails take inspiration from the classics, yet are designed to change with the seasons to give guests a unique view of the modern cocktail revival.
Chef Jordan Lerman said the name of one of the restaurant’s signature cocktails, The Loki, is based on a Scandinavian mythological god, known as a playful trickster.
“When we were coming up with our Traveler’s Companion section, we were thinking of some different spirits from around the world that people have not heard of, or ones that fell into an obscure category,” said Chef Lerman. “I have always loved Scandinavian cuisine, and I remembered hearing about Aquavit — but not the store-bought kind, the household kind from Scandinavia. Immediately, we started playing around with the idea of making our own Aquavit.”
“We came up with housemade aquavit using toasted caraway, fresh dill, a neutral grain high-proof spirit and some pine,” Lerman continued. “We wanted to keep the flavors clean, so we serve it chilled, stirred with a vinegar-based, slightly sweet cocktail seasoning called cucumber dill shrub, and some blanc vermouth. The Aquavit pairs perfectly with smoked fish and cured items, so we serve each one with a little bite, a Geufrette (waffle cut) potato chip topped with crème fraiche and trout roe. I believe it’s one of the best and most creative cocktails on the menu, as long as people are willing to give it a shot!”
Farmer’s Table at the Wyndham Boca Raton is a farm-to-table restaurant in Boca Raton that offers a “Garden-to-Glass” variety of adult beverages. The “mocktail” menu of festive drinks is full of enticing options for guests looking to celebrate without alcohol. The restaurant worked with Snake Oil Cocktail Company to create its unique cocktail program.
Taffy Spiller, bartender for Farmer’s Table, said guests enjoy the mocktails as pick-me-ups when the temperatures rise. “Our Refresh and Revive mocktail menu features drinks made with many of the fresh organic herbs from our garden, which is located right outside the front door of Farmer’s Table,” she said. “Our gardens were planted by Farmer Jay’s Pure Organics, and our bartenders pick the fresh herbs and edible flowers each day.”
“One of our most popular drinks is the Okeechobee Sunrise,” Spiller continued. “It consists of a fresh house-made beet ice cube with delicious iced Moroccan Mint tea poured over it. Our teas are provided by Trend Tea, a tea lounge located with the adjacent Wyndham Hotel. The Okeechobee Sunrise looks like a beautiful Florida sunrise– a refreshing way to start off the day.”