I’ve been making the case for a while that aquavit is an underrated spirit. Many bars don’t carry it at all, and those that do usually only have one bottle. But with more American distillers trying their hands at this traditionally Scandinavian spirit, we decided it was time to host an Aquavit Week at Metrovino.
Aquavit Week kicks off Tuesday, December 11 with an all-aquavit cocktail menu and an aquavit-inspired beer from Breakside Brewing. The cocktail menu will have six cocktails featuring six different aquavits: Krostad Festlig and Gamle (Portland), Bull Run’s forthcoming Regnig Dag aquavit (Portland), North Shore (Chicago), Sound Spirits (Seattle), and Linie (Norway). To show off aquavit’s versatility in mixing, the cocktails range from spirit-forward to citrusy, from sparkling wine to a Hot Toddy. We’ll also have chef Dustin See’s house cured gravlax on hand to pair with the drinks. The cocktails and food will be available all week.
The beer is a fun project that brewmaster Ben Edmunds invited me to collaborate with him on at Breakside Brewing. New Nordic Porter is inspired by the flavors of aquavit and cutting edge Nordic cuisine. It’s a classic porter flavored with caraway, dill and fennel pollens, and a hint of plum. It’s on tap at Metrovino this Tuesday only and at the Breakside brewpub.
The newest aquavit we’re featuring is Bull Run’s, which will be out in limited quantities very soon. We’re pouring it in this riff on the Boulevardier, the Swordplay:
1 1/2 oz Bull Run Regnig Dag aquavit
3/4 oz Campari
3/4 oz Maurin Quina
Stir with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange peel.
I would have liked to include Gamle Ode dill aquavit in this event, but we weren’t able to get it into Oregon in time. However if all goes well, we’ll have it here sometime soon. I highly recommend it.
The full cocktail menu is below. Come get it next week.
Bull Run aquavit, Campari, Maurin Quina
Aquavit and Tonic
Sound Spirits aquavit, house dill and mustard seed tonic, lime
Krogstad Festlig aquavit, lemon, sugar, sriracha bitters, sparkling wine
North Shore aquavit, Dolin blanc vermouth, Galliano, celery bitters
Linie aquavit, cherry Heering, lime, Angostura bitters, sparkling wine
Aquavit Hot Toddy
Krogstad Gamle aquavit, house Swedish punsch, lemon, star anise