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A plethora of good drinks is part of any visit to Central Otago. This means boutique liquor, the coziest establishments and, of course, endless vineyards. New Zealand has mastered producing great wine, discovered craft beer and are now starting to get its hands dirty with spirits – and Reds Bar knows how to get dirty!
Reds has Queenstown’s largest selection of spirits in town, so naturally the bar is bursting with creative concoctions. We’ve rounded up our top tipples of the Reds’ menu to take some umming and ahhing out of your life.
The sun’s out and Summer calls for Sangria – or a twist of one! The Catalunya is a tall refreshing spin on Sangria made with Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, London Dry gin, apple juice, elderflower and a garden full of fruit and herbs straight from QT’s rooftop garden.
The Full Monte
The current move towards more culinary styles of cocktail is set to continue, with pairings like beetroot and bourbon, carrot juice with Aperol and thyme, and Pisco and turmeric are too good to miss out on. The bar’s Full Monte is a thirst quenching and moreish example of this. Mix Amaro Montenegro (a digestive from Italy made with secret herbs and spices), Espolon Blanco (a light, fruity, tequila), pomegranate juice, basil, lime and kick back into the night.
With a great cocktail it all really stems from flavour – but it doesn’t hurt when it’s as visually pleasing to the eye as it is to the palette and the ears (Awanui is the Maori name for blossom). This fragrant elixir is a medley of Dolin Dry, Peychaud’s Bitters, Prosecco and Zubrowka infused with locally foraged Cherry Blossoms.
Queenstown’s Most Expensive Cocktail
Good ingredients are always important but you can take it to the next level and use some premium spirits. Just in time for the holiday season, Reds recently designed Queenstown’s Most Expensive Cocktail – all yours for $69.
Starting with Remy Martin XO, the cognac’s nutty flavour has been enhanced by Briottet Crème de Chataigne, a hazelnut liqueur. A sinful champagne reduction is balanced with Tempus Fugit Gran Classico, and the Most Expensive Cocktail wouldn’t be complete without some decadent champagne air. It’s a little bit of luxury designed to be decadent, go on treat yourself.
And some famous last words from the mixology master himself … “To be able to offer guests a cocktail list designed to stand out, the largest back bar in Queenstown and to showcase as many New Zealand products as possible makes me feel like a kid in a candy store.” says Reds Bar Manager, Gethin Curtis. We reckon he’s done a pretty good job.
See you at Reds!
words by chris lee
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