Located in Western Springs, Illinois, Vie is the brainchild of James Beard Award nominee Chef Paul Virant. This Michelin Star Restaurant is based on Virant’s love of canned and preserved ingredients used to create modern American cuisine such as wood-grilled quail, smoked acorn squash ravioli and pan-roasted walleye pike.
Vie’s beverage director, Bill Anderson has crafted a cocktail menu full of interesting and mouth watering selections including drinks containing apple infused vodka as well as kumquat infused gin. He also enjoys mixing tea in with his cocktails because of the distinct flavors it imparts.
If you want to try your hand at mixing up tea in cocktail form, Anderson suggests that you try his drink “Makes Wide Turns”. “Makes Wide Turns was an ad-hoc cocktail I prepared for a group of four thirty-somethings one evening last Fall,” says Anderson. “They asked for a rye based cocktail that was velvety and stirred.” The group seemed to really enjoy the drink and ordered several rounds. “As they began to leave, one enthusiastic member of the party lightly clipped a doorjamb and giggled.” The next day on his drive to work, he read the words “Makes Wide Turns” on the back of a truck. “Recalling the young man’s change in depth perception I decided to put the drink, entitled after this trailer sign, onto the list as soon as I arrived at work.”
Makes Wide Turns
- 1.5 oz Bulleit Rye
- .75 oz Bols Genever
- .5 oz Aperol
- .5 oz Vanilla Earl Gray Tea Syrup*
- Fee Old Fashioned Decanter Bitters
Stir all ingredients and serve over a single, large chunk of ice. Garnish with a flamed orange peel to be discarded.
*Steep Earl Gray tea in 1.5 cups of boiling water with a vanilla seed, bisected length-ways, in the pot. Strain away tea leaves and vanilla seed. Whilst still piping hot, add an equal amount of granulated sugar. Stir this until a solution is achieved and set aside to cool.
Anderson notes that the spice of the rye works gently with the genever to create the flavor sensation of toast and cereal at first. “This is quickly followed by the syrup and Aperol’s sweetness that is swiftly switched into a quiet bitterness as the citrus pith in the Aperol and earthen spices from the tea churn back into the original rye and genever foundation.” The addition of the carmelized, citrus flavor of the flamed orange peel creates a very complex beverage that is a great complement to smoked or grilled meats.