It was an accident, really. I was craving a gin and tonic because…summer. And I was home with plenty of booze and mixers and serums and bitters because…booze blogger. But I didn’t have any tonic! Which is strange. But, there it is…
Then I remembered I had a whole box of goodies, all from Portland, Oregon artisans in honor of Aviation American Gin’s 10th birthday, that I had YET to dig into. In celebration of their 10th year, Aviation has partnered with a handful of their favorite Portland brands on Project 10, offering limited-edition specialty items, like those pictured here.
Aviation American Gin set the precedent for the American Gin category – one of the first to move away from a traditional juniper heavy blend to a balanced variety of other botanicals. In their case, botanicals like lavender, cardamom and sarsaparilla from the Pacific Northwest, where this spirit was born, help to make this gin a favorite for bartenders and cocktail enthusiasts alike. Also, look how sexy this bottle is. Ooh la la!
I was dying to dip into the Pok Pok Som Drinking Vinegar, Cardamom & Tangerine – developed to pair with Aviation’s range of botanicals. Drinking vinegars, or “shrubs” as they were referred to in the Colonial era, have been making a comeback in the states mainly because of the resurgence in cocktail culture here. It is a fruit based vinegar syrup that is wonderful with sparkling water or as a mixer in cocktails. It often doubles as the acid and sweet part of a cocktail and can be an easy and really refreshing mixer.
After a little experimenting, a touch of bittersweet from Campari here, a squeeze of lime juice there, and a heavy pour of Pamplemousse LaCroix (my new FAVE!), I found my perfect summer concoction.
Take that, you boring ol’ G&T! It also created the most lovely shade of blush. With all of the fruits and botanicals involved, it reminded me of a perfect summer garden party…
Can of Pamplemousse LaCroix