When we dine out, a beverage tends to play second-chair lawyer to our food: still appreciated, just not to the same degree. We knew about Chef Craig Stong's organic garden growing at Montage Resort (although it's dark by the time we remember to look), and how the menu reflected its seasonal offerings. What didn't occur to us was how Studio's bartender treated their signature cocktail with the same distinction.
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For Tashina Bross, a big part of her creativity comes from the fresh ingredients grown steps away from the restaurant. She handpicks fruits, vegetables and herbs, making a difference in the taste of all her concoctions. Bross explains it best when we inquired about her enticing selections: "It is a seasonality cocktail menu that provides fresh flavor profiles and complexity that suits everyone!"
Studio Garden's homegrown taste stems from a blend of muddled, organic strawberries and Ketel Citroen, naturally infused with lemon and lime. Bross then mixes it up with Wonka SweeTart flavors of lavender syrup, juice from Meyer lemons as well as fresh lemonade. A minty accent finishes this farmers market find. To call it refreshing wouldn't do it justice. We likened it to a recent spa experience: energizing to start with a calming finish.
Its rosy hue reminded us that sunset was less than an hour away. Patrons around us were being asked if they'd like a photo with a backdrop of the Pacific. When it was our turn, we declined. Twice. By the third we caved, but our non-conformist tendency insisted upon their garden. It held more meaning to our dinner than any body of water.