Issue link: http://digital.copcomm.com/i/551222
august 2015 / the tasting panel / 73 Alive and Kicking in Chicagoland Open for more than 35 years in a renovated historical building on Chicago's South Side—a city that has been very strong for Twenty Grand—A&S Liquor and Wine Boutique houses quality wines, spirits and domestic and imported beers in a sophisticated décor. The staff concentrates on teaching their customers about all of their products and introducing them to new experiences, whether that's an uncom- mon varietal or a unique infused spirit like Twenty Grand. With Twenty Grand's entire portfolio on the shelves, guests are intrigued by the brand—Ahmad Elkhatib, President of A&S Liquor and Wine Boutique, explains: "Our customers like to have a wide variety of options to explore with their palate. Twenty Grand is smooth and feminine, but it still has a kick to it! The expressions really get your taste buds wondering with the interesting, lively flavor." A Windy City winner, indeed! Hanna Aboukier, co-owner of A&S Liquor and Wine Boutique, located in Chicago. PHOTO: REBECCA PEPLINSKI PHOTO: MARGARET SOSS With the wealth of the Twenty Grand portfolio at his fingertips, bar chef and consultant Giovanni Lopes was inspired to create takes on classic cocktails that showcase the brand's quality and versatil- ity. Here, the 1920's Grand Cosmo and A Sidecar Named Desire feature the Twenty Grand Vodka Infused Cognac. 1920's Grand Cosmo ◗ 2 oz. Twenty Grand Vodka Infused Cognac ◗ 4 fresh raspberries ◗ ¼ oz. complex syrup* ◗ ½ oz. triple sec ◗ Dash of orange bitters A Sidecar Named Desire ◗ 2 oz. Twenty Grand Vodka Infused Cognac ◗ ¾ oz. fresh lemon juice ◗ ¾ oz. Carpano Antica ◗ ½ oz. triple sec ◗ ¼ oz. complex syrup* *Lopes' proprietary complex syrup is so-called "because there's nothing simple about it," he says. A top-secret take on the classic sweetening agent that includes vanilla beans, peppercorns and bay leaves, among other ingre- dients, complex syrup is missing one standard ingredient: water. "I use something else that's secret—and healthy!" says Lopes.