Drink This Weekend Edition: Where to sip Cardinal Sin

Originally Posted on SauceMagazine.com’s Drink This Weekend Edition: Where to sip Cardinal Sin
Friday, August 17th, 2012
Cardinal Sin

Photo Credit Sauce Magazine

Area bartenders are eager to shake and stir local, quality products into their cocktails. When it comes to vodka, they’re giving a nod to Cardinal Sin, a small-batch vodka that St. Louis Distillery launched a few months ago.

Like many vodkas, Cardinal Sin is crisp and clean. Contrary to many unflavored vodkas, though, it has a full-bodied, almost buttery mouth feel. According to distiller Greg Deters, the artisan spirit is achieved thanks in part to the recipe (that uses a mash bill of Midwestern malted corn and northern plains barley) but also to the advanced technology of his still.

“We’re able to, with one distillation, get the heads, hearts and tails more precisely separated,” explained Deters. Through batch distillation instead of continuous distillation, he said, “Once the still does its work, we can manually go in and more accurately slice off the tails and heads.”Thus, Cardinal Sin vodka reaches its purest form the first time it passes through the still (unlike the four, five, six or more times that many vodka producers like to tout these days), yet it still retains the flavor and aroma that give it character.

Earlier this week, a handful of bartenders assembled at vodka haven SubZero in the Central West End to hear Deters discuss the operations at St. Louis Distillery and to share a few Cardinal Sin-inspired libations. Looking to taste what the pros concocted? Here are three places where you can sin with pleasure this weekend.

At SubZero, bar manager Dustin Parres has created The Homegrown Sin. Parres’ garden-fresh libation includes Cardinal Sin, Thatcher’s organic elderflower liqueur and a house-made cucumber syrup topped with club soda and a cucumber garnish. At Salt, Matt Obermark is offering the Spiced Collins. For this summery, sprightly Collins, Obermark combines Cardinal Sin with another local product, The Big O ginger liqueur, along with house-made honey syrup, lemon juice, Peychaud’s bitters and a splash of club soda. Want something boozier? Try Essential Sin: a vodka martini created by Joel Clark of Sanctuaria. Clark uses a three-to-one ratio of Cardinal Sin vodka and dry vermouth, then he adds depth of flavor with orange bitters and a dash of house-made brown butter sage liqueur before garnishing the drink with an orange twist.

If three sins aren’t enough for you, Deters mentioned that St. Louis Distillery will soon be looking for local bartenders to create cocktails inspired by each of the seven cardinal sins. Get ready to go to confession.

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