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Posted at 4:44 PM ET, 01/13/2009

Best of the Baracktails

By Julia Beizer

We gurus don't like to brag, but this job's got some decent perks. We took advantage of one of them last Friday when we dipped out of the office a little early to try some Barack Obama-themed cocktails: three from bars at the Kimpton hotels, two from a local restaurant group.

Barack's Fizz at Urbana
If you try one inaugural cocktail this week, make it this one. Mixologist Kevin Rogers was inspired by the classic Bucks Fizz -- also known as a mimosa -- when he whipped up a sparkling-wine cocktail accented with Courvoiser, Grand Marnier, Maraschino liqueur, orange juice and strawberry slices. The sparkling wine opened up the flavors in the fruit -- Julia thought it lightened the syrupy sweetness of the Grand Marnier and Fritz thought it balanced the fullness of the cognac. ($12, available through at least the end of January.)

The Dream at Acadiana, Ceiba, DC Coast, PassionFish and TenPenh
This warm cocktail blends bourbon, apple cider, honey and caramel. We liked the wintry blend of sweet flavors, but we mostly liked that it warmed us up. ($9.95, available through January.)

First Lady Marmalade at Firefly
A cocktail for ginger lovers, the First Lady Marmalade is made with a blend of Ketel One Citroen, ginger vodka and a house-made Meyer lemon and ginger marmalade. Honestly, it tastes like a lighter, fizzier version of ginger beer, thanks in part to a healthy topping of champagne. Bar manager Alice Gaber garnishes this creation with cubes of candied ginger, a sugary contrast to the not-too-sweet drink. ($12.50, available through at least Februrary.)

Americano = Change at Poste
Bar manager Rico Wisner heard that Barack Obama is a fan of the Americano cocktail, so he used that legendary Campari creation as his starting point for his inaugural beverage. The mix of Bluecoat Gin, Campari and sweet vermouth foam is boozy for sure, but that's what we liked about the drink -- being able to taste the gin alongside the tangy orange. It's garnished with an orange slice, something Julia loved for the added sweetness. Characteristically, Fritz liked his straight up. ($11, available through January.)

The Spirit at Acadiana, Ceiba, DC Coast, PassionFish and TenPenh
We love the elderflower liqueur St. Germain, so we were excited to try this champagne-based cocktail. But the dominant flavor here isn't elderflower, it's white grape juice of the Welch's variety. A garnish of frozen grapes livened both the presentation and our taste buds, but if you find yourself at the bar at one of these restaurants, we'd recommend the Dream instead. ($9.95, available through January.)

-- Julia & Fritz

By Julia Beizer  | January 13, 2009; 4:44 PM ET
 
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Kramerbooks & Afterwords Cafe in Dupont Circle has created a special Inauguration Cocktail menu:

Barackstar Martini
Van Gogh Dutch Chocolate Vodka
Godiva Chocolate & White Chocolate Liqueurs

The First Lady
Tanqueray Gin, Strawberry Purée
Fresh Sour Mix, Club Soda

Hope & Change
A Pint Of Brooklyn Lager & A Shot Of Clontarf Irish Whisky

Secret Service Sidecar
Courvoisier Vs Cognac, Mathilde Peach Liqueur, Sour Mix

Pear-Fect President
Hangar 1 Spiced Pear Vodka, Mathilde Pear Liqueur
Club Soda

Posted by: efstewart | January 16, 2009 12:03 AM | Report abuse

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