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Vodka for dinner

Last night I went to the Square One Vodka and summer barbecue pairing dinner at Orson in San Francisco. I've been to many cocktail pairing dinners before, but this one worked especially well. Why? Because it's vodka. Unlike stronger flavored booze like tequila or scotch, vodka is more adaptable to the ingredients surrounding it- both in drinks and pairing it with food.

We had a drunken watermelon ball (served on a spoon) to pair with smokey oysters, a crisp sparkling wine and vodka drink to pair with pork belly over a watermelon and fruit salad, a simple and light peach shandy to go with some BBQ meats, and an orange-infused vodka and espresso drink with dessert. (Or, in my case, a vegetarian version of those dishes.) Bar manager Jackie Patterson was able to adapt sour to sweet, soothing to spicy, sweet to smoky, and then make a bitter drink for dessert.

I forgot to take pictures, so my illustration of the meal is below. As you can see, Jackie (exhibiting shakerface) mixes up a drink, and then I open my mouth to drink it. That is pretty much what happened.


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