Signal the coming of spring with this citrusy cocktail in Providence
If you’re like me, nothing says spring has finally sprung like a good gin beverage. Well, lucky for me (and all you fine people like me), there’s Figidini’s Alpine Spring to help you emerge from the winter blues. Created by General Manager Kevin Toth and Bar Manager Katelyn Verissimo, the drink was inspired by the herbaceous spring flavors of Figidini’s kitchen. Toth yanked both bay and basil from the prep station to create his laurel bitters, which are key to the green, vegetable-like brightness of the cocktail. Mixed with a bit of the herbal liqueur Génépi Des Alpes and some fresh lemon and stirred to perfection, this cocktail tastes like warm times ahead.
Stir with ice and strain.
67 Washington Street
Take a sip of springtime sunshine in East Greenwich
If you can't wait for the warm, spring weather to be here in full throttle, "The Arch" served at Siena, is essentially sunshine with a buzz. A modern take on tiki, it’s made with fresh pineapple-steeped vodka, basil and elderflower liqueur.
According to the drink’s creator, Sarah Pumple, the drink’s namesake is Federal Hill’s iconic arch – although in a roundabout way. “Everybody thinks what’s in the middle is a pineapple,” Rumple, told me. “And it does look like one. But it’s a pinecone! Go figure.”
To DIY the vodka, put pineapple chunks (not from a can, for the love of Moses) in a clean jar, and add high-proof vodka. Seal and steep for one week. Strain and store for weeks or even months, to get you through to spring.
Place a small amount of ice and the basil in a cocktail shaker or large glass. Muddle until the leaves become fragrant – but not mashed. Add the other ingredients, then shake like the dickens. You want a little froth in the end. Strain into a chilled glass.
Locations in Providence, Smithfield and East Greenwich
Try a Greek inspired, floral delight in Providence
The Dionysus is a special drink, and not just because of its mythical reference. The owners of Kleos, Lauren Lynch and Tom Bovis, named their newborn son Dionysus at the suggestion of their bar manager Deanna Marandola. Kleos’ cocktail menu specializes in Greek twists on classic drinks, and Dionysus (a.k.a. Dino) is the namesake of this homage to an after-dinner Trinidad Sour – just as Kleos’ version of an Old Fashioned is named after Dino’s brother, Hercules. This cocktail is both refreshing and potent, with a flavor profile that stands up to Kleos’ modern Greek fare. The concoction marries black fig-infused vodka and Skinos Mastiha (a liqueur made from the resin of the Mastiha tree). The flavor is uniquely herbal and floral and doesn’t overwhelm the palate. So raise your glass to Dionysus, god of the grape harvest and wine, and to Dino,
• 2 oz. black fig-infused vodka
• 1 oz. Skinos Mastiha
• 1 oz. lemon juice
• 3 dashes Angostura Bitters
Shake with ice and strain into a sugar-rimmed glass, garnish with grapes and mint.
250 Westminster Street
Sip a sweet and spicy tribute to Providence
The Downcity is sweet and spicy, tangy and tough, and as complex as its namesake. The versatile blood orange has been particularly popular in recent years, getting pulped into everything from margaritas to sours, and it blends smoothly with two New England liquors. All the Rogue Island cocktails are worth a taste, but the Downcity is one you can easily make at home, putting that dusty jar of cayenne pepper to good use.
There was no single genius behind the Downcity, but rather the entire Rogue Island bar staff: Jacqui Macek, Kandace Richmond, McKenzie Buckley, and Amanda Leigh all contributed to its contents, with guidance from owners Bill Pietras and Ryan Bessette. They workshopped the drink together, refining its precise recipe. This communal approach is in keeping with Rogue Island’s farm-to-table mission, not to mention the cocktail’s name, which ensures that no one ever forgets where they enjoyed it.
65 Weybosset Street
Enjoy a martini perfectly "paired" with springtime sun in East Greenwich
2oz pear vodka (such as Grey Goose La Poire)
1oz St. Germain elderflower liqueur
Get your martini glass frosty. Put it in the freezer or fill temporarily with ice. Combine the vodka and liqueur in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake vigorously until blended and chillier than a Hitchcock blonde’s heart. Strain into your prepared glass, add gingerale, and enjoy.
219 Main Street, East Greenwich