Savor the best seasonal flavors according to the master sommelier of one of Hawai‘i’s most exclusive private clubs.
PHOTO COURTESY OF KOHANAIKI
Is it possible for a drink to embody the sunny feeling of summer? Kohanaiki’s (kohanaiki.com) master sommelier Andy Myers thinks so. The resident beverage expert at one of Hawai‘i’s most exclusive invitation-only private club communities, Myers has a finely tuned palate for flavors that complement a day on the beach at Kohanaiki, and days that will inspire the same inside-out warmth from home. To suit the season, Myers’ favorite beverages are those with lower alcohol content and high acidity to suit crisp flavor profiles including melon, lemon zest, green apple and tropical fruit.
“I’m primarily a wine guy, so I’m drinking a lot of refreshing wines currently,” Myers says. “My favorite at the moment is the Bugey Cerdon made by Patrick Bottex. It is a sparkling red wine from a region of France just a bit to the west of Geneva. It tastes enough like sparkling raspberry juice to make me think I’m not really drinking.”
A delightful bubbly twist on a wine-centered favorite, Myers’ summer sangria has proven to be a fan favorite at Kohanaiki. Inspired by a trip to the farmers market in Spain with the intention of creating the perfect vacation cocktail, this original sangria recipe is made with sparkling wine and easy to re‑create. Choose from strawberries, watermelon or peaches to customize the drink at home, “or, heck, combine all three,” encourages Myers. For a tropical drink, Myers recommends a Jungle Bird cocktail with pineapple juice and a heavy splash of Campari that Myers admits his wife may have surpassed him in mixing. “The Campari adds just a touch of bitterness to an otherwise semisweet cocktail,” he says. “Just perfect.”
16 oz. strawberries and/or watermelon and/or peaches Half a bottle of gin Half a bottle of white vermouth 12 oz. sugar 1 orange (for garnish) Mint (for garnish) Sparkling wine (cava is ideal)
Step 1: Dice your fruit (peel the peaches and cut the rind off the watermelon).
Step 2: While you are chopping fruit, combine the liquor and mix with the sugar until the sugar dissolves.
Step 3: Add the fruit to the sweet boozy mixture. Let sit for 24 hours.
Step 4: Strain off the fruit.
Step 5: To serve, mix 1 oz. of the sangria macerate with 3 oz. sparkling wine. Garnish with half an orange wheel, a sprig of mint and a few pieces of the fruit from the macerate.