What do you say to someone who tells you they only like vodka drinks, besides, “eeeeeeeegh!”? How do you rescue them from the precipice of artificially-flavored “martinis” and vodka-cranberry pretending to be a Cosmopolitan?
Well, if you're at Chapter One in Santa Ana, you can nudge them, ever so slowly, toward alcohol with some kind of innate flavor by ordering them a Sunrise in Jalisco ($10), a Mexican-inspired drink with muddled cucumber, vodka, tequila añejo, guignolet (a French wild cherry liqueur that is relatively uncommon in the US and is not at all like the usual sugary DeKuyper crap), and simple syrup.
Let's be honest: this is a very sweet drink, which plays well into the
theme of slowly shifting a drinker's paradigm. The tequila is a nice,
middle-of-the-road mixing tequila, and the cucumber cuts through some of
the sweetness of the guignolet and the simple syrup. From this drink,
it's just a couple of steps further to a sweet-bitter Manhattan, and
from there the gates of craft cocktaildom open.