Canton Dinner Series Showcases Ginger Liqueur



Ginger is hot. Literally, the spicy root seems to have been riding a culinary wave for the past few years, and nowhere is it better featured than in Domaine de Canton super-premium ginger liqueur. Forget about those cheap sweet hot infusions or flavored vodkas that seem to be taking over the top shelves at so many bars. Canton is a delicate spirit created by hand-peeling and cutting the freshest baby Vietnamese ginger and then blending it with with VSOP and XO Grande Champagne Cognacs, Provençal honey, Tunisian ginseng and fresh vanilla beans.

The resulting liqueur is made in small batches without the addition of artificial additives or colorants, and it tastes fresh and complex either straight up chilled or as an ingredient in creative cocktails. The small team behind Domaine de Canton has been showcasing their product through a dinner series that moves across the country introducing new fans to cocktails and food made using their ginger spirit.

Nashville was lucky enough to be the first stop on this year's 12-city tour, with chef Thomas Cook of Prime 108 at Union Station Hotel creating an inventive menu to match with Canton cocktails. In general, cocktail suppers are harder to plan than wine or beer dinners because the complex flavors and tongue-anesthetizing characteristics of spirits can interfere with the enjoyment of food.

Chef Cook did an admirable job incorporating Canton's flavors into his menu of sweet tempura lobster rolls, scallops, Peking duck and a delightful dessert of blood orange financier, candied orange zest, Champagne-ginger sorbet and ginger gelee.

Predictably, the desserts and the lovely Canton ginger and key lime granita intermezzo were the most successful dishes since they handled the sweetness of the liqueur the best.

The supper series is continuing to cities like Aspen, Miami, Phoenix, San Francisco, Chicago and Las Vegas over the next few months, and will even make a stop at Le Bernadin in New York City in what should prove to be an unbelievable evening of seafood thanks to the talented staff of chef Eric Ripert.

But for those of you that couldn't make the Nashville dinner or won't be able to follow the Canton caravan to other cities, at least we can all make some cocktails to enjoy. Courtesy of Domaine de Canton, here are two recipes to get you started and you can find more on their website.

The Gold Rush

1.5 oz Domaine De Canton
1 oz Bourbon
.5 oz Fresh Lemon Juice

Build all ingredients into a mixing glass. Shake vigorously and strain into a martini glass. Optional cherry garnish.

French Ginger Snap

2 oz Domaine de Canton
1 oz Citrus Vodka
½ oz Triple Sec
½ oz Fresh Lemon Juice

Shake and strain over ice. Garnish with an orange piece.

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