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Drink This Weekend Edition: The Grand Dame of cocktails puts on a fashion show at Water Street

January 20th 02:01pm, 2012

012012_dtweGin is the original mixable spirit (and the most mixable, in my opinion). While a martini, a Negroni or even a simple gin and tonic are time-tested showcases of the sprightly, juniper-forward liquor, there are many more gin cocktails worth checking out, which is exactly what I did recently at Water Street, located at 7268 Manchester Road in downtown Maplewood.

The restaurant’s menu includes a section called “The Classic Ladies,” with Lady Gin taking multiple walks down the drink runway. Offerings include the Pink Lady, White Lady, Green Lady and Blue Lady. Among the four drinks, Pink Lady is perhaps the most commonly known: Gin wears a dress dyed pink from grenadine and a frothy white collar of shaken egg white. A splash of tart lemon juice could have turned her runway sashay into more of a snappy saunter, but the citrus is kept in check by sweet Calvados. Not all Pink Lady recipes call for the French apple brandy, but the one published in Henry McNulty’s Vogue Cocktails – the vintage bar book that Water Street owner Gabe Kveton reaches for most often – does.

The White Lady, my favorite among this Grand Dame parade, is simply a more casual, dressed-down version of the Pink Lady: Keep the gin, lemon and egg white, slip off the grenadine, put on Cointreau. If this mild-tasting cocktail is gin wearing nothing but a slip, she’s perfectly poised about going public in undergarments. As for the herbaceous Green Lady, I like to think of it as gin wearing gardening attire. After all, she’s hanging out with Green and Yellow Chartreuse and lemon juice.

Gin, grenadine, egg white. Gin, grenadine, egg white, lemon. Gin, egg white, lemon, blue Curacao … or Chartreuse … or Cointreau. See the Grande Dame on display at Water Street. She puts on a fun, tasty fashion show.

By Ligaya Figueras

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