Shake up a Lavender Dog Cocktail for a Taste of Tempe House of Tricks
Letting your taste buds wander through Tempe restaurants is not hard to do. There are so many eateries serving up fresh ingredients, unique bites, great cuts of meats (for all of us carnivores) and some darn tasty tacos. The cocktail scene is filled with the usuals—beer, great wine, and oddly enough, Moscow Mules. Although I had several amazing Moscow Mules, I was still looking for a crazy inventive and unique cocktail. You know, either a bar or restaurant with a cocktail menu that pushed a bit past the norm.
I found just that at House of Tricks.
Now, House of Tricks is one of those special spots that should definitely be on your radar, whether you are staying in Tempe or not. You will want to make the trip to town for a meal there. Make a reservation, especially on a weekend. The food is that good. The restaurant itself, or should I say, the massive front yard where most of the tables reside, is worth the stop alone. If you have any allergies, especially gluten intolerances, this is the place for you. Their menu is clearly labeled and the waiters are quick to pick up on food allergies and alert the kitchen so you can eat safely.
While the food menu was impressive, it was the cocktail menu that had me intrigued. Drinks like “Spring Chicken,” “Pachamama,” and “Purple Rain” were among the “Light N’ Refreshing” offerings. But at the top, was the “Lavender Dog.” This not-so-simple spin on a classic salty dog combined grapefruit, fennel and lavender; three rather bold flavors in their own right. How would they hold up together? I just had to know.
Surprisingly, it was fantastic. The tart, spicy and sweet flavors came together beautifully. I instantly knew this was what I was looking for. It worked in the desert environment and I had to bring it home to share. The bartender was happy to supply the measurements, I tried it at home, made a tweak or two, and voila! Now you can enjoy it right along with me.
Lavender Dog Recipe
- 2 oz Tito’s Vodka (or your favorite vodka)
- ½ oz Fresh Grapefruit Juice (or grapefruit liquor)
- ½ oz Simple Syrup (or to taste)
- ½ oz Fresh Lemon Juice
- 2 dashes of Fennel Bitters
- Lavender Sea Salt (muddle fresh lavender in sea salt)
Lavender Dog Instructions
- Combine all liquid ingredients in a cocktail shaker.
- Add ice.
- Wet a martini glass rim and dip in lavender sea salt (see recipe below)
- Pour Lavender Dog into martini glass.
Lavender Sea Salt
- Coarse Sea Salt
- Dried Lavender (make sure they are edible like this)
- Mortar and Pestle (we love this one)
Grind together two parts sea salt and one part dried lavender. Salt mixture is ready when the lavender is fine enough to be used as cocktail salt on the rim of a martini glass.
Please drink responsibly and NEVER drink and drive.