D.C.’s annual culinary awards gala not only celebrates the best in food, but wine and beverages too. And lucky guests got to sample all the luscious libations.
ChurchKey / Birch & Barley beer director Greg Engert created a fun hop-tail for the event. His Farmhouse Punch used Russian Standard vodka, lemon, grapefruit and peppercorn syrup, served in an absinthe-rinsed glass, topped with Belgian-style Pale Ale Rayon Vert, and garnished with fresh tarragon. The drink was crisp and light, with a touch of appealing bitterness and great aromatics from the fresh herb topper…it was my go-to sip at the end of the evening when everyone hit the dance floor.
Guests at the reception prior to the award presentation were treated not only to the nominated cocktails, but to a selection of wines from Chile, and a Chilean Pisco cocktail
from Rachel Sergi of Jack Rose Dining Saloon–the potently pretty in pink cocktail uses dried rose petals, Campari and Burlesque Bitters. At the dinner reception following the awards, we could sample wines from Australia, Spain and Virginia (locally, Barboursville, Boxwood, Tarara and Veritas were represented.) I was also digging the VirGINia is for Lovers cocktail created by Gina Chersevani, Stu Ellis and Michael Saccone, which had a healthy dose of locally distilled Catoctin Creek Watershed Gin along with rose water and creme de violette.