I met Ben Sandrof behind the stick at No.9 Park; in those days he would often come down the street to see me after a busy night and share a beer and shot. When Barbara Lynch and John Gertsen opened Drink in Fort Point, Ben transitioned there to be the principal bartender. Clearly one of Boston's most talented, but not physically behind an official bar at the moment- he's currently working for St-Germain as their Northeast Sales Manager. But once a bartender always a bartender, and he sure comes up with tasty cocktails.
Ben filled me in on some details of the product, and offers a few recipes:
St-Germain is a artisinally produced liqueur from France. It is made from little white flowers (elderflowers) that bloom once a year in the Savoie region, late May to early June. The same day they are picked, the flowers are cleaned, de-stemmed and then submerged into an eau du vie (a distillate of grapes). This process happens in Dijon, the northernmost point of Burgundy and therefore the distillate is made entirely from Burgundian grapes- Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Gamay. A bit of natural cane sugar is added and the mixture sits for 4-6 days, depending on the harvest (intesnsity of flavor in the flowers varies year to year). The liquid is then strained off and St-Germain is ready to be bottled. Its surprisingly low sugar content makes it incredibly versatile- it can mix with just about any type of cocktail.
Stirred over ice and strained into cold glass, garnished with lemon oil.
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