It's officially summer and our palates turn toward light, fruity libations made with fresh ingredients and clear spirits. Here in Miami, we tend toward vodkas, white rums, even cachaca and sometimes forget one of the most aromatic and versatile spirits in the world. Gin.
Robert Ferrara, who was recently named New Times' Best Bartender 2013, wants to reacquaint you with gin. The spirit, made from grains, juniper berries, botanicals, and spices, is versatile. Different gins highlighting different flavor profiles -- some having hints of lemon and orange, others spiced with notes of cardamom or coriander.
Ferrara is the Miami gin connoisseur for Beefeater/Plymouth which, besides looking great on a business card, means that he conducts "gin tours", inviting bartenders to sample gin at some of his favorite bars. The last stop on Ferrara's tour? The Broken Shaker.
Ferrara told Short Order, "since this is one of my favorite bars, I saved the biggest and best stop for last."
This Sunday, June 23, from 5 to 8 p.m., Ferrara and the Broken Shaker Boys are hosting "Punch-Drunk-Love", a celebration of gin, sun, and '90s hip-hop. Ferrara invites you to soak in some rays, go swimming, play ping-pong -- and get punched. And by "punched" we mean enjoying several different gin-based punches.
The punches will be made with local Florida citrus, fresh herbs plucked from the Broken Shaker's own garden, and tea. "Maybe we'll also use some beets in one of the punches, since they're in season now, Ferrara hinted.
The punches are $7 a glass, or $150 for an entire punch bowl made with an entire bottle of Beefeater 24 (enough for your entire entourage). To get the party started right, Ferrara will be purchasing a bunch of punch bowls to share. "I want to start the day and get everyone feeling right."
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Once you're feeling great (and the sun goes down), stay for the 8 p.m. movie, Wet, Hot, American Summer, starring Janeane Garofalo, David Hyde Pierce, Michael Showalter, and Marguerite Moreau. Getting punched was never so much fun.