880 Harbor Island Drive, Harbor Island
According to C-Level’s bar manager Jonathan Boyle, who developed the drink, the Summer Solace is both a backward look at the high season of sun and fun and a cool companion on that slow, leafy stroll toward winter. He tells me that in developing the drink, the Solace’s ingredients were picked as a sort of cooling antidote to the summertime blues.
“I was drinking some aloe juice I bought in an Asian supermarket and thought it was perfect for a drink about asummer — we use aloe for sunburns — and then I thought of cucumbers,” he says. “So the Rain [vodka], the cucumbers, the aloe — they all suggested a cooling effect in summer…and then the name, Summer Solace, just seemed to come together.”
Boyle calls the Summer Solace a “late afternoon, three-to-four o’clock, when the sun’s just hitting you” kind of drink. Even in October.
“I think the key ingredient is the aloe juice,” he says. “I got turned on to aloe juice a number of years ago; it’s lightly sweet without being heavy, and with some citrus it brightens up nicely. The whole thing should be balanced and thirst-quenching above everything else.”
Even with San Diego’s overdose of sunshine, the shadows grow longer, the days shorter, and it won’t be long before Boyle starts running short on the Summer Solace.
Kitchen Proof: “Bright” is the right word for the Summer Solace. Light on its feet, it skips with the exotic lightness of the aloe mixing well with the citrus and melon flavors and it finishes off clean with the depth-defying bittersweet of pomegranate.
C-Level’s Summer Solace
In a Collins glass full of ice, pour:
- 1 ½ oz. Rain cucumber-lime vodka
- ½ oz. lemon juice
- 2 oz. aloe juice
- ½ oz. Monin pomegranate syrup (sink to bottom)
Garnish with a pineapple leaf, sit back and renew, sip by sip, the glow of summer.