Mixologists head to the kitchen for inspiration

What’s trending in the world of mixology? Crafting cocktails is a specialized skill set, combining creativity and practicality. These days, unconventional inclusions are topping the trends, as mixologists save SKUs and make the most of their available ingredients.  

Technomic’s latest trend report shows that Canadian mixologists are bringing their cocktails into the kitchen, with a few new takes on ingredients and flavours.

Umami, a savoury ingredient typically used in soups and broth, is a rising star in the cocktail world. Calgary restaurant Proof is featuring umami in their Fortune Teller, where they mix Bombay Sapphire, chamomile grappa, lemon juice, grape juice, misosyrup, balsamic vinegar, tonic, and Angostura bitters for this menu item.

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Unlikely herbs are also being highlighted, as Vancouver’s The Acorn has concocted Dill with Me, featuring Gobernador pisco, green chartreuse, green apricot-olive brine, fresh lime, and dill syrup on their menu.  

For those who like it hot, Calcutta Cricket Club in Calgary offered a saffron gin martini, with fennel-saffrongin, Cocchi Americano, and mango-saffronbitters. It’s an unexpected, spicy take on a classic.

Not commonly thought of as a cocktail ingredient, Vancouver’s Published on Main has a martini with cheese as its headliner. The cocktail mixes basil-infused Tanqueray 10, carbonic tomatoes, and goat cheese for a non-traditional twist for martini lovers.

The use of these non-traditional cocktail ingredients are ways for savvy mixologists to use up kitchen ingredients while offering something delicious and unexpected. Some venues have taken this trend even further, incorporating using non-traditional methods for their cocktail creations. Kitchen equipment like the French press, which usually makes great coffee, has also been used to create muddled cocktails like a fall harvest sangria.

Between the innovative use of kitchen ingredients and utensils, this fall and winter promise to be exciting in the cocktail world, as mixologists continue to use their creativity to discover new trends.