Alicia Perry is creating some delicious libations at Polite Provisions. She's falling in love with the bar scene and culture. She enjoys her regulars while challenging herself to create new cocktails. We chat with Alicia about her journey as a bartender and learned all about her refreshing, bubbly grapefruit-based cocktail called Layover In Paris, which showcases Absinthe in a more delicate and palatable way.
Layover in Paris
2 Dashes Absinthe
.75 oz Grapefruit Juice
.75 oz Pamplemousse
3 oz Brut Rosé
1 oz Sparkling Water
What's the story behind the Layover in Paris?
We wanted to produce a menu that showcases our individual work and creativity as a bartender. At the time, I was personally interested in low ABV cocktails and utilizing Absinthe. When it came to naming the cocktail, I found myself most inspired by the pamplemousse. Pamplemousse is a grapefruit liqueur and its name translates to grapefruit in French. With that being said, I found “Layover in Paris” to be fitting for this grapefruit-based cocktail.
Describe the taste.
It's mildly floral, effervescent and citrus-forward.
What's the key component of this drink?
I personally find the key component of this drink to be the flavors of grapefruit. The grapefruit truly brightens the drink and acts as a vehicle for the Absinthe, allowing it to become more palatable.
What flavors does the Absinthe bring to the drink?
Flavors of anise or sweet fennel. It contributes to the floral component of the tasting profile.
What reactions are you expecting to get from customers when they try this cocktail for the first time?
They have been pleasantly surprised, as many often stray away from cocktails that implement Absinthe. I find that guests are not typically fans of the sharp black licorice flavor that Absinthe can produce. When making this cocktail, I really aimed to curate something that would showcase Absinthe in a more delicate and palatable way.
If you had to pair this cocktail with a dish, what would you pair it with?
A charcuterie board consistent of cured Italian meats, liver pâté and brie cheese.
Watch as Alicia Perry shows us how to make her light, bubbly grapefruit-based libation called 'Layover in Paris.'
What kind of experience can guests get at Polite Provisions?
One of the things I cherish about Polite, are the great personalities working within. Not only do we aim to present you with an exceptional cocktail that suits your personal palate, but we also provide an authentic and memorable experience. Feel free to take a seat in front of any bartenders’ wells, as they will happily converse with you about your day or answer to any of your curiosities about the world of cocktails.
About Alicia Perry
Are you from San Diego?
Yes, born and raised.
How has your journey been leading up to your role at Polite Provisions?
I’ve been with Polite for 2.5 years. I started out cocktail serving and worked my way up to my current role as bartender within a year. I’ve absolutely loved my time here at Polite, as they are truly my family! I’ve learned an exuberant amount of spirit and cocktail knowledge. I have developed into a well-rounded bartender by means of Polite’s extensive and ongoing staff training.
What's your favorite cocktail on the menu?
Woman with the Tattooed Hands
Define the perfect cocktail.
The perfect cocktail, generally speaking, is well-balanced and tells a story: it has a beginning, a middle and an end. For me personally, I prefer cocktails that have an earthy and bitter flavor profile.
What are some cocktail trends you are noticing in San Diego?
The implementation of products that effect color (i.e. activated charcoal). Assimilation of the “Farm-to-Table” concept into cocktail making. The utilization of chemistry tools (i.e. centrifuge) to effect flavor.
What is one thing you wish people understood about bartending?
The flow of service. Working at a high capacity bar, we push out so many drinks. So we do our best to put out quality drinks consistently and in a timely manner.
What's your favorite drink to make behind the bar?
Oddly enough, a whiskey sour.
What's your favorite spirit?
What should everyone stock in their home bar?
Basic bar tools: set of shaking tins, jiggers, bar spoon, mixing glass, and a cocktail strainer.
Preferred spirits: London Dry Gin, Bourbon, Aged Rum, and Blended Scotch.
Other things to consider: Bitters,Vermouth, Fresh Citrus, and Simple Syrup.
What do you do in your spare time when you're not creating cocktails?
Music and food are my life. If I can try a new restaurant and see a great artist each week, then I am a happy camper.
What's next for you?
I want to continue to work towards my development as a bartender here at Polite. I think cocktail competitions are something of interest to me, and will allow me to be further challenged in various ways.