From the archive: This article was from our original site -MyCityLife posted on 17 June 2014.
Sustainability has been the “buzz word” for the last year especially. And it comes back to the fact that a decade ago, we seemed to have forgotten the world revolves on a bio network. We are in a cycle of ecological economics, where our human austerity meets our ecology head-on. The artisan mentality with the locavore approach is fast becoming the lifestyle; entire suburbs and communities revolve around it. The butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker are coming back with a vengeance. It’s coming back to looking after our friends, to choosing to work with like-minded fellows and forming a financial ecological network where everyone works together, plays together and stays together. We want to know where our ingredients come from; we love the quirky personalities that are willing to oversee these newborns through to their full-grown stages. This state of mind is extending through our cafes, to our bars, our pubs, and our restaurants; chefs, managers and owners want to know exactly what they’re serving up to their clientele – because, just like their suppliers, they have formed an intense relationship with their customers.
And the shining jewel in this ecological crown comes The Emporium Hotel, where being an eco-warrior borders on more than a policy; it’s the way of life. In all aspects of operations, sustainability and ecological economics is part and parcel to procedure. Products, ingredients and produce are all ethically sourced with purchases made direct from Queensland farmers and businesses. Certainly, The Emporium embodies an artisan approach using boutique five-star hotel delivery.
And the spotlight continues to shine on this eco-glamazon, with the launch of their winter cocktail menu carefully curated by liquid dream handlers, bar manager Brendan Miles and head sommelier Robert Lavelle. As winter comes, a cocktail and tapas menu has been carefully constructed that also reflects the Emporium’s unique personality and environment.
Just as tea starts off any lady’s day, The Morning Tea is a fitting start to any lengthy cocktail session. Served alongside delectably lush macaroons for the ultimate grown-up tea party, this is a fragrant and ambrosial concoction of chamomile infused Beefeater gin, Aperol, rhubarb bitters, peach puree and Licor 43 vanilla that is also vibrant to the eye.
For a heartier option, The Scottish Chestnut Treacle brings quite the flush to the cheeks as a cheerful drink to man one up and put hairs on the chest. Uniting the lavish 12YO Chivas Regal with Le Birlou apple and chestnut liquer, apple juice and whiskey barrel-aged bitters, this is a sophisticated take on the old fashioned – a conundrum in itself, given the old fashioned whisky is already so upmarket. Paired to pulled pork sliders with fresh coleslaw and smokey BBQ sauce, this is quite a winter evening session as if the class of Bordeaux French is entrenched in the cold of Scotland. It’s certainly quite the man moment that also suits the distinguished woman’s palate.
As a kick to the tastebuds, The Martini Molé is opulent winter decadence. Altos Reposado tequila, Mt Tamborine’s choc ‘n’ chilli liqueur, Mozart dry chocolate liqueur and fresh chilli is flawless winter sweetness in a martini glass. Perfectly paired to the Gambas al Ajillo of local Mooloolaba prawns sautéed with garlic, paprika and Australian olive oil and Tempura Vegetables with chilli and garlic soy dipping sauce, this martini cuts through the lightness of the fried dishes wonderfully. The enduring local presence from Mt Tamborine’s choc n chilli liqueur through to Emporium’s in-house grown chilli and garlic is a wonderfully provincial touch.
For the sweet tooths, the Caramel Popcorn Martini is a witty winter dessert in a glass. Popcorn-infused Absolut Vodka, Mt Tamborine’s caramel butternut liqueur and caramel syrup blend wonderfully with any dessert of ice cream and waffles. For those who like a bit of balance, this martini matched with the Emporium cheese board means a restrained indulgence.
With the coming of the cooler months, The Emporium’s conscientiously constructed cocktail menu sets quite the benchmark, delightfully uniting its ethical and sustainability codes with a noble locavore mindset within a craftsman approach. This in itself is a blend of delightful ingredients for the ultimate Emporium distillation that is unique and accomplished; a refreshing cocktail with a signature all unto itself.