with Fairmont Pacific Rim

Welcome to the first instalment of ‘Sip(s) of the Season’, where I will be going around the city finding the most delicious libations to sip this season. 

I feel like it’s only appropriate to start this exciting journey with not one, but two of the best bars in Canada: Botanist, that landed at #9 for this year’s Canada Best 50 Bars, and The Lobby Lounge, which landed on #30. Both bars happen to be located in the stunning Fairmont Pacific Rim.

Fashion Takes Flight at the Lobby Bar

It’s no secret that Fairmont Pacific Rim is Vancouver’s hub for fashion, art, and culture. ICYMI: the hotel lobby showcases a rotation of one-of-a-kind couture dresses from the most iconic fashion houses. Versace, Saint Laurent and Alexander McQueen have graced the hotel with their pieces.

To further elevate the experience, the talented team from the Lobby Lounge has come up with series of haute-cocktail flights to translate the stunning collection to sip-able creations. Meet this season’s pieces and cocktails:

Inferno – inspired by Roberto Capucci couture dress. 

The devil really is in the details. Layers of press-pleated silk taffeta are meticulously put together to create the silhouette of a flame, hence, Inferno. The cocktail itself is constructed with mezcal, Campari, pineapple syrup and lime, and a hint of firewater bitters to bring the heat. A chic and sassy libation to get the appetite going.

Cloak + Dagger – inspired by Yves Saint Laurent silk gold cape + velvet jumpsuit.

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The silk, bright golden cape, inspired by the couture evening wear from the 1950s is a true definition of glamour. The velvet jumpsuit simply screams luxury. The cocktail, Cloak + Dagger, made with Bacardi 8, sherry vermouth, strega and bitters, is a play of the classic Manhattan. Every sip is a delicious layer of flavours and texture. Velvety, elegant, and absolutely sophisticated.

Kaleidoscope – inspired by Yves Saint Laurent ‘Nuit de Grenade’ patchwork dress.

A bright, playful and colourful dress that defined the 20th century fashion. A dress worn by some of the world’s most stylish royalties: Princess Grace of Monaco, the Duchess of Windsor, and Nan Kemper to name a few. The cocktail, made with gin, cachaca, lemon, Grenadine, and bitters embodies the colourful and playfulness of the dress. Fruity and bright just in time for the warmer weather. 

Botanist

The award-winning restaurant has made a name for itself this past year. Helmed by Hector Laguna, Botanist has constantly executed a dining experience like no other. On top of that, their wine and cocktail program is outstanding, which got them in the top 10 of this year’s Canada’s Best 50 Bar. This season, head bartender Jeff Savage and team have come up with some uber delicious spring libations, perfect for patio any weather.

The Grouse Grind.

Before you let the name intimidate you, let me assure you that this, is the kind of Grouse Grind anyone can conquer. Even better, your grind time, will more likely be less than hmmm… let’s say 20 minutes. Jeff wants to create a riff on a classic Vesper martini (the kind that James Bond drinks). The cocktail is built with mostly Botanist gin, one part of Zubrowka bison-grass vodka, and herbed-oleo saccarum. It’s a more herbal, less in-your-face cousin of the Vesper.

The ‘One Inch Punch’

This version of clarified milk punch introduces a bright, floral-ish, fruity note to their classic counterpart. The bergamot-infused gin, Genever, dry Curacao, tea,  and clarified milk creates a refreshing flavoured cocktail, made for a sunny afternoon in the sun. Think of it more like a glass of iced tea, for grown ups, to be consume at or before lunch time. 

Ricco Bambino Rosé

When it comes to wine, Wine Director Jill Spoor picks the rosé from Ricco Bambino as her wine for the season. The relatively new, Kelowna-based winery really embodies the summer (my kind of summer, at least) wine: fun, eclectic, with a little bit of attitude. The rosé is vibrant in colour (they’re a natural wine, actually), fruity in the nose, and perfectly dry in the mouth. You can almost taste a hint of Jolly Rancher at the end too – playful and cheeky rosé for a beautiful patio day (Botanist patio is now open, by the way)

Congratulations again to the team at both Botanist and Lobby Lounge for the recognition in Canada’s Best 50 Bars. I’m really excited to get the next Sip(s) of the Season going already. Any guess where?