The Tasting Panel magazine

September 2014

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98  /  the tasting panel  /  september 2014 W hen you've got a spirit as masterfully crafted as Purity Vodka, not just any cocktail will do: To bring out its fine- tuned flavor, the bartender becomes an artisan, crafting a cocktail that's deserving of such a premium base spirit. So when the world's most awarded ultra- premium vodka launched its Craft Your Way to Tales competition this spring, the bar was raised for vodka cocktails—big time. "As an artisanal, ultra-premium brand, Purity Vodka is all about a discerning discovery of quality and uniqueness," says Thomas Kuuttanen, Master Blender for the brand. "To elevate our Crafted Spirits campaign, we challenged bartenders to craft a unique Purity Vodka cocktail for a chance to win a trip to Tales of the Cocktail. Ultimately, our goal was to A Scandinavian Salute to Craft The Gilroy in New York may have been open for fewer than six months, but that didn't stop its customers from voting for Francis Verrall's winning cocktail, The Scandinavian Maid. "It became one of our most popular drinks as soon as we put it on the menu," says Verrall, who is a Managing Partner at this intimate neighborhood bar. "It's a simple cocktail, and, honestly, simplicity is key with Purity. It's a superior vodka, and you want to taste the Purity in cocktails to get the most out of it," contin- ues Verrall. But it is Verrall's dedication to crafting the perfect cocktail that really gave Purity this platform to shine: "Whenever we look into adding a new cocktail to the menu, we always try it with a number of different spirits. Purity was by far the best— nothing else was even in the same class, so I knew it would be a great cocktail." With an appreciation for character of the spirit, Verrall was excited to experiment with Purity even more at Tales, serving up a unique vodka Sazerac in the tasting room. "That Sazerac was fantastic," says Verrall, who admits that serving a vodka Sazerac in New Orleans was a bit daunting. "I really thought bartenders would scoff at the idea of a vodka Sazerac, but people were into it," he says with a laugh. "It just goes to show that if you're using a great spirit, you can make anything work." The Scandinavian Maid ◗ 2 oz. Purity Vodka ◗ 1 oz. Linie Aquavit ◗ ¾ oz. lime juice ◗ ½ oz. simple syrup ◗ ½ oz. ginger extract ◗ 6 mint leaves ◗ 3 cucumber slices ◗ Ginger ale top ◗ Muddle cucumber, mint, lime juice, ginger extract and simple syrup in a shaker. Add Purity Vodka and Linie Aquavit and shake over ice. Fine-strain into a highball over ice. Top with ginger ale and garnish with cucumber slice and mint sprig. At its Tales of the Cocktail Tasting Room, Purity Vodka brought together bartenders from all over the world. Here, Duane Fernandez Jr., Purity Vodka Brand Ambassador, joins Master Blender Thomas Kuuttanen and CEO Andy Glaser. A Well-Crafted Competition PURITY VODKA BRINGS TWO WINNING BARTENDERS TO TALES OF THE COCKTAIL by Rachel Burkons / photos by Scott Myers

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