The Fairytale-themed cover of Bitter & Twisted’s new “Book o’ Cocktails” belies founder and head barman Ross Simon’s vast cocktail knowledge. After all, this level of craft isn’t just child’s play. Having trained at the London Academy of Bartenders, Simon (co-founder of Arizona Cocktail Week and an Arizona Culinary Hall of Fame recipient) takes his work seriously, but that doesn’t mean the new menu can’t be a fun trip down memory lane.
Like a well-crafted drink, the menu itself is infused with playful puns and pop culture references. New items include the Rum D.M.C (Banks 5 Island Rum shaken with dark rum, lime, guava, cinnamon and grapefruit, topped with house-made passion fruit foam, served frappe) and a the Déjà Cold Brew (Luxardo Espresso with fresh strawberries, house-blend vermouth, cold brew and Aztec bitters to finish). For fans of fruity confections, there is the Taste the Rainbow (house-infused kaffir lime gin, sloe gin, fresh lime, pineapple and strawberry).
The new book will will officially launch on Tuesday, May 2. According to Simon,”This year’s ‘Book o’ Cocktails’ was inspired by classic childhood fairytales and stories, so each menu section subtly represents different children’s book. We also brought back popular sections, such as cocktails drawn from creative bartenders around the globe that we very humbly call Friends With Benefits. For guests who just want to order a drink without going through the entire menu, the Top 10 section features our best-selling cocktails. Our graph-based Cocktail Map allows guests to choose their own cocktail adventure by playing it safe or drinking on the wild side.”
Cocktail photos: Carl Shultz