Bar Manager, Pangea Kitchen

Summer is here! And we at Pangea have decided to offer, for the first time, a fresh new summer drink menu to celebrate its arrival. This menu includes four new, one of a kind creations that we developed in house. I’m excited about this menu, so excited that I think we will roll out new drinks menus every time the seasons change!

Here are our new summer drinks:

The Eastern Remedy

This delightful, Middle Eastern-inspired drink is one that I’m proud to say our bartender-in-training, Hillary Barnhart, created. She wanted to make a drink that incorporated a cardamom flavor, since it is a traditionally eastern spice and so many of our dishes here at Pangea are influenced by eastern culinary traditions.

“I experimented for a couple weeks,” Hillary said. “The main thing was trying to figure out how to get the right amount of cardamom flavor into the drink.”

I, personally, think she nailed it. This light pink colored drink captures the cardamom’s unique flavor — and so much more. Hillary starts by roasting the cardamom seeds. She then steeps them in sugar water to create a syrup. The drink is made with rose water, Peychaud’s Bitters (which is what gives it the pink color), lemon juice, and Aquavit botanical spirit. It’s finished with a toasted rosemary garnish.

Originally, Hillary was going to use gin as the main liquor, but we decided to use Aquavit because that particular liquor also has a cardamom flavor. (Aquavit actually predates gin. It was made in Scandinavia where they used local spices like caraway, or cardamom. When the Scandinavians brought it to England, the locals made it their own by flavoring it with juniper — creating gin.)

Every ingredient in this drink is carefully selected to mesh with the cardamom undertones. I highly recommend it!

Berry Your Stress

This is a drink I first came up with a few months ago when a customer came in who wanted something sweet. She didn’t really like the taste of alcohol, but said she did enjoy berry-flavored drinks. At the time, I had just ordered a berry vodka that I was eager to try, so I threw this together. It turned out well! And I’m delighted to present it to all our customers this summer.

This drink is like a sweet, fruity cosmo. We start with the berry vodka, some lemon juice, a special kind of grenadine (that we make in house), and a splash of orange cream liqueur. This is our sweetest drink, by far. The perfect accompaniment to a hot summer day.

I Got Yuzu Babe

If you have never heard of the Yuzu lemon, don’t worry. Until recently, I hadn’t either. But after trying this Japanese citrus fruit, I absolutely fell in love and decided I had to incorporate it in a drink. It has such a neat flavor.

This Yuzu-inspired drink is basically a daiquiri, except I use sake rather than rum. From there I add the yuzu fruit, some lime juice and a simple syrup. Now, there are two options with this drink — you can order the low alcohol by volume (ABV) version, or the standard. The low ABV version just contains those four ingredients. It’s something you can have over lunch without risk of becoming impaired. For the standard drink, I’ll add some vodka.

The Coconut Cocktail

I’m still working on a name for this one, but I created it because I wanted something that was more tiki-themed for summer. This drink combines coconut rum, Papa’s Pilar rum, lime juice, orange creme, and a simple syrup. We end up with a coconut, vanilla flavored drink that makes you feel like you’re sitting on a warm, sandy beach.

This one is my most recent creation, so I’m still tweaking it a bit. Stay tuned for the latest updates when we roll out our summer drink menu. See you at the bar!