Charleston’s Top Cocktail winners (left to right) “Double-Breasted” by Ian Farley of Prohibition and “The Devil Wears Nada” by Michael Fitzgerald of Crave; Photographs (4) by Ruta Elvikyte
March 18, 2015
Sip in Style Toast the city’s most fashion-forward drinks and their makers at Baker Motor Company Charleston Fashion Week®
Happy Charleston Fashion Week! Heading to the tents tonight or tomorrow? Be sure to visit the Style Lounge pre-parties from 6-7:30 p.m., as we’ll have special guests pouring the most fashionable cocktails in town. Last year, 22 local bartenders were invited to take on Ben Arnold Beverage Company’s CFW challenge to create a drink based on either Grey Goose vodka or Herradura tequila to complement the five nights of fashion in Marion Square. After an online vote last winter, eight contenders moved on to a live competition at Republic Garden and Lounge, where our panel of judges selected two winners: Michael Fitzgerald’s “The Devil Wears Nada” and Ian Farley’s “Double-Breasted.”
Tonight, Fitzgerald—chief mixologist at Crave—will be making his “cool cantaloupe drink” featuring Grey Goose Le Melon. Habañero syrup provides a steady kick to a nectarous trio of tangerine juice, peach liqueur, and the melon-infused vodka, bound with almond milk and emulsified egg whites. Plop two melon balls on top and you’ve got a good approximation of the female form, he says; hence the name “The Devil Wears Nada,” a tropical tipple even Miranda Priestly couldn’t resist.
And tomorrow night, Ian Farley of Prohibition serves his riff on a classic stirred martini, which tastes smooth and silky, but leaves the oaky complexity of the barrel-soaked Reposado unobscured. “It’s a posh way to take a shot,” says Farley. Cut with Scrappy’s lime and chocolate bitters—small batches special-ordered from Seattle—and sweetened with raw agave, the concoction is “accessible for someone who doesn’t usually like tequila,” he explains. Emphasizing the drink’s unisex appeal, the Charleston native sought out a name that conveyed style and versatility. Enter “Double-Breasted,” an ode to a sophisticated suit and its recent revival.
Want to make CFW’s 2015 Top Cocktails at home? Find the recipes here.
Baker Motor Company Charleston Fashion Week® runs through Saturday, March 21, inside the tents at Marion Square. To find the full schedule and buy tickets, click here.