Yes, it’s a pink drink. But, men, it’s better than you think. Let me explain. Or, better yet, let Bar Basic bartender Christina Daley explain. “I have to tell you, we barely sell these things to men,” she admits. “It’s mostly the women who order them.” During the quiet afternoon lead-up to a busy Friday evening at Basic, Daley is holding court on the cosmology of the Clementine Cosmo, one of the planks among the raft of specialty cocktails at Bar Basic. And why do men fear the pink? “I think it’s just that guys don’t enjoy sitting there with the pink in their glass. I know when they drink it, they like it; they just don’t admit it.” In fact, she says, Basic’s bar manager and co-owner Jon Younger, apparently uninhibited by the rampant “roseophobia” among the members of his sex, developed the Clementine Cosmo. “There’s a certain appeal to putting a spin on the average cosmo,” Daley says. “Use Clementine — and it becomes more intriguing.” While it retains its rosy outlook, inside the Clementine Cosmo has a peel of a different sort. “A lot of people like the Mandarin cosmo, and we decided to do the Clementine version.” The two most popular species of the baggy-trousered Mandarin are the sweet Clementine and the tarter Makin (which most people recognize as the Mandarin proper). This dulcet distinction between the two makes all the difference for the Clementine Cosmo, according to Daley. “It’s very fruity — you’re going to get the cranberry and lime immediately,” she says. “The vodka is going to have a good aftertaste in the Clementine with a brief burst of orange flavor.”
Kitchen proof: “Just hold it for seven counts on the vodka. No, eight. No, nine. Well, whatever you prefer. I’m a happy pourer!” Daley says. O happy, happy pourings! The potent rush of fruit crashes the gates of the palate like sunshine across a tile floor — but go easy on the green juice. Too much lime puts it in bitter competition with the Clementine — to the detriment of both.
- Seven- or eight-count pour of Svedka Clementine Vodka
- Squeeze of fresh lime juice
- A splash of cranberry juice
Shake ingredients with ice and pour into a martini glass with an orange peel garnish and hum a few bars of “Here Comes the Sun” before sipping.