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The Highest Compliment

(post, Kathleen Bauer)

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"I wish I'd thought of that" is, in my humble opinion, the highest compliment one can pay to an idea, whether it's a new ad, a new internet service or a garden accessory.

And that's exactly the thought that ran through my mind when I heard about Recession Proof Mixology (RPM), a weekly series promoting the alcoholic inventions of Portland distiller House Spirits. This very simple idea is for Aviation Gin principals (that's Matt Mount, executive distiller, wielding the shaker in the photo at top) to hit various happy hour hot-spots, make cheap and delicious drinks for patrons using their product and then slip away into the night to reappear at another venue the next week.

Not only are they getting their product into potential customers' gullets, they're introducing local bartenders to said products and drawing new crowds to bartenders' stools. Oh, and those new patrons? They're not only dumping their silver into desperate bar-owners' cash registers on a slow night, they're spreading the word about the events to their friends. Freaking brilliant.

I met a friend at the RPM night at Vindalho the other evening, and with her able assistance and the most excellent ministrations of bartendress Shannon, we sampled and sipped our way through the offerings along with several plates of happy hour noshes. Like I said, freaking brilliant.

And thanks to Shannon's light (and sticky) fingers, I came away with a couple of recipes she snuck from behind the bar so you can have your own event. Enjoy!

Pegu Club Cocktail

2 oz. Aviation Gin
3/4 oz. Grand Marnier
5/8 oz. freshly squeezed lime juice
1 dash Angostura bitters
Lime wedge

Fill shaker 2/3 full of ice, add all ingredients except for lime wedge. Shake. Serve up with lime wedge.

Singapore Sling

1 1/2 oz. Aviation Gin
1/2 oz. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 oz. pineapple juice
1/2 oz. simple syrup
2 dashes Angostura bitters
1 oz. soda
1/2 oz. Benedictine
1/2 oz. Cherry Heering
Lemon wedge
Maraschino cherry

Fill shaker 2/3 full of ice. Add gin, lemon juice, pineapple juice, simple syrup, bitters and soda. Shake, serve up with float of Benedictine and Cherry Heering. Top with lemon wedge, maraschino cherry and pineapple leaf on a pick.


1 1/2 oz. Medoyeff Vodka
3/4 oz. Aperol
1/4 oz. clover honey syrup (equal parts honey and hot water, dissolved)
1 1/2 oz. freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
1 oz. Prosecco

Fill shaker 2/3 full of ice. Add vodka, Aperol, honey syrup and grapefruit juice. Shake, pour into champagne flute and add Prosecco.