What to Drink at Spoonbar, Scott Beattie’s New Home in Healdsburg

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That's Scott there at left, slightly obscured by a John Chapman. Photo: J. Barmann/Grub Street

The almost open H2 hotel in Healdsburg, a hipper sister property to the Hotel Healdsburg, will have as its street frontage a brand new restaurant called Spoonbar from chef Rudy Mihal (formerly of Odyssey in Windsor) and culinary cocktail maestro Scott Beattie (formerly of Cyrus). Beattie's drink menu, not unlike the tome at Rickhouse, is going to be a 20-pager at last count, complete with short essays about various spirits and cocktails. Below, we share with you an excerpt, including the main drink list.

It should also be noted that Scott will be serving a program of pitcher cocktails with Kold-Draft ice cubes that won't melt too fast.

Look for Spoonbar to open on or around June 30.

Spoonbar Potions

The cocktails that we offer here at Spoonbar have been selected from classic formulas developed over 200 years of cocktail history. Many are American original recipes, and others hail from Europe and Latin America. Most classic recipes were rarely brand specific and would simply list “gin,” for example, as an ingredient rather than “Beefeater.” With the exception of vodka, virtually every brand of liquor within each spirit category is different from the next. This means that cocktails can vary significantly depending on what spirits are used to make them. There is always a persistent quality/price consideration to be made.

With these constraints in mind, we have spent many long hours discovering which spirits yielded the finest expressions of classic formulas. As the business of craft-distillation has blossomed significantly of late, particularly in the Bay Area, and offered bartenders so many incredible new choices, we have given preference to many of these exceptional local spirits for use in our cocktail program. Additional preference has been given to distilleries that are certified or uncertified organic, practice sustainable land management, re-use their waste for animal feed or energy and have an overall lower carbon footprint than their big-brand competitors.

All of our recipes are executed with the following convictions in mind: Great cocktails must be made entirely from great ingredients, measured down to the fraction of an ounce, diluted and chilled with the proper kind of ice, served in a glass that best showcases the final result, and appropriately garnished. When available, seasonal produce and flowers will be incorporated into our beverages, all of which are grown for us by friends and neighbors living in Northern Sonoma County. All of our citrus is organic and sourced locally, when available during citrus season.

Ultimately, these drinks tasted incredible to us and we hope that you enjoy them as well. We are always open to suggestions, comments, and opportunities to work through some new recipes,

Scott Beattie
Bar Manager

Classic and Original Cocktails

Tart and Refreshing

Aviation
Blade Gin, Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur, Lemon Juice, Tempus Fugit Crème de Violette
$7

Bellini
Prosecco, Local White Peach Puree, Lemon
$7

Clover Club
Junipero Gin, Lemon, Raspberry Syrup, Egg White
$7

Corpse Reviver #2
Blade Gin, Lillet Blanc, Cointreau, Lemon, Absinthe
$8

Cucumber Collins
Square One Cucumber Vodka, Lemon, Sugar, Mint, Seltzer, Fresh and Pickled Cucumbers
$9

John Chapman
St. George Whiskey and Pear Eau de Vie, Lemon, Apple, Ginger, Thai Coconut Foam
$10

Last Word
Blade Gin, Green Chartreuse, Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur, Lime
$10

Millionaire
Appleton Rum, Plymouth Sloe Gin, Kushan Peach Eau de Vie, Lime, Natural Grenadine, Angostura Bitters
$8

Pedestrian
Hangar One Mandarin Orange Blossom Vodka, Lime, Sudachi, Ginger, Natural Grenadine
$8

Pisco Sour
Encanto Pisco, Lemon, Lime, Sugar, Egg White, Angostura Bitters
$7

Siddartha
Hangar One Buddha’s Hand Citron, St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur, Lemon,
Egg White
$8

Side Car
Germain-Robin Brandy, Cointreau, Lemon, Orange Zest
$8

Sloe Gin Fizz
Plymouth Sloe Gin, Lemon, Gomme Syrup, Egg White, Bitters
$7

Smoky Paloma
St George Aqua Libre, Sombra Mezcal, Charbay Grapefruit Vodka, Lime, Grapefruit, Sugar
$8

Improved Classic Cocktails
Spirit-Driven and Intensely Flavored

Manhattans

Classic
Weller 12 year, Dolin Sweet Vermouth, Angostutra Bitters
$6.50

Franco-Frankfort.
Michters Bourbon, Briat Armagnac Hor’s d’Age, Noilly Prat Sweet Vermouth, Angostura
$9

Smoky Local
Black Maple Hill Reserve Bourbon, Qi Black Tea Liqueur, Noilly Prat Sweet Vermouth, Angostura Bitters
$8

Calvador
Adrien Camut 6 year Calvados and Pommeau, Laird’s 100 proof Apple Brandy, Dolin Dry Vermouth, Local Verjus
$11

Sazeracs

Classic
Rittenhouse 100 proof Rye, Gomme Syrup, Peychaud’s Bitters, Herbsaint, Lemon Zest
$6.50

Bardstown
Michter’s Rye, Gomme Syrup, Peychaud’s and Angostura, Absinthe, Lemon Zest
$9

Sinensis
Sazerac 6 Year Rye, Gomme Syrup, Peychaud’s and Orange Bitters, Absinthe, Orange Zest
$9

Negronis

Classic
Plymouth Gin, Dolin Sweet Vermouth, Campari. Orange Zest
$6.50

Handlebar
Maker’s Mark, Noilly Prat Sweet Vermouth, Campari, Lemon Zest
$8

Tempus Fugit
Westbourne Strength Gin, Carpano Antica Vermouth, Gran Classico, Orange Zest $10.

Old Fashioneds

Classic
Weller 12 year Bourbon, Sugar, Angostura Bitters, Muddled Orange, Amarena Cherry
$6.50

Local Rumbullion
St. George Aqua Libre, Demerera Sugar, Angostura Bitters, Muddled Lime and Orange
$9

Apple Brandy
Laird’s Straight 100 proof Apple Brandy, Sugar, Barrel-Aged Bitters, Pommeau du Normandie, Muddled Orange
$9

Hot Weather Classics
Available for one or as a pitcher (5 Drinks)

Margarita

Our tart and refreshing classic Margarita is simply Tres Agaves Blanco, Luxardo Dry Orange Liqueur, Agave, and Fresh Lime. $6.50/$32.50. If you’re in the mood for a luxurious take on the Margarita we suggest Partida Blanco, which we combine with nothing more than Agave and Fresh Lime. $9/$45. We are also are happy to offer a daily fresh fruit Margarita that features a puree of seasonal fruit sourced from within 10 miles of this hotel combined with locally fabricated Aqua Libre Agave Spirit and Qi Orange Liqueur (St. George, Alameda) for $11/$55. Please ask your server or bartender for details.

Mai Tai

The term Mai Tai usually conjures up images of plastic stir straws, paper umbrellas, 12 kinds of rum and fruit juice in a massive ceramic tiki mug. No, the original version developed by Trader Vic Bergeron in the 1940’s was a delightful mixture of aged Jamaican Rum, Orange Curacao, Orgeat (Almond) Syrup, Fresh Lime Juice, and rock candy syrup. We offer you our most similar replication of this with Appleton Reserve Rum at $6.50/$32.50 as well as a super local version that utilizes St. George’s new Aqua Libre Rum, Qi orange liqueur, Small Hands Orgeat, Demeraera Simple Syrup, and fresh lime $9/$45.

Mojito

This Cuban classic is offered at $6.50/$32.50 with Appleton Estate White rum, lime juice, local mint, sugar, and seltzer. We also like a slightly more aromatic version with rum agricole (distilled fresh cane juice from Martinique) using organic Batiste from St. John U.S.V.I. for $8/$40 or the full-bodied local option with Domaine Charbay’s Cane Rum at $9/$45.

Dark n’ Stormy

The classic varieties of this cocktail usually involve combining dark rum and ginger beer and then tossing a lime wheel in. We’ve found that this is a nice place to start but a Dark n’ Stormy gets much more interesting with the addition of a healthy dose of fresh lime juice, essential oil of ginger, and Angostura bitters. We can prepare this for you with the traditional choice of Gosling’s Black Seal from Bermuda for $6.50/$32.50. Also worth consideration might be a Dark n’ Stormy made with Ron Zecapa Solera 23, fabricated from fresh pressed cane juice grown thousands of feet up in the volcanic soils of Guatemala for $8/$40. A full bodied, yet clean Domaine Charbay Tahitian Vanilla Bean version will set you back $9/$45.

Punch

Pimm’s n’ Gin
Rum n’ Hum

Spirits

Gin

You might call gin the world’s oldest flavored vodka. Blasphemy, you say? There are a few ways to make gin but all of them involve the infusion of botanicals into grain neutral spirit. Juniper berry, by law, must be the primary botanical in gin, with others such as cassia bark, citrus peels, coriander, cubeb berry, peppercorns, and orris root being some of the traditional choices. Certain new brands on the market are incorporating some unconventional botanicals like ginger, cucumber, and cilantro and a few brands are getting rid of the name gin altogether, opting to call their product “botanical” or “?” because the juniper berry might not even be in the mix at all.

The very cheapest brands of gin are not fabricated with real botanicals but with artificial and/or natural flavorings. However, value brands such as Gordon’s and Gilbey’s and just about any brand that is priced more expensively are made with real botanicals. This means two things: most gin brands that we are all familiar with are quite legit and also that no two brands are the same. Most popular gins fall into the “London Dry” category and the most of the famous brands hail from Britain, gin’s birthplace. We feel that many of these distinctive gins coming from across the pond are indeed worthy of their journey. We also are happy to offer you a few locally made gins as well as some organic options coming from other domestic distilleries.

... There are informative essays on several other spirits as well.