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Toronto bartender shares 75 amazing cocktails from around the world – one is even called ‘Yonge Street’

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TORONTO, Oct. 22, 2022 – Toronto’s Lauren Mote must have one of the most amazing jobs in the world. As a leading bartender, she has travelled to 60 plus countries over the last 20 years developing cocktail recipes and training bartenders. Now she has written her first book called A Bartender’s Guide to the World: Cocktails and Stories from 75 Places by Lauren and James O. Fraioli, a James Beard Award-winning cookbook and cocktail author. Even better, Lauren and her husband Jonathan Chovancek (a chef and professional photographer) got to explore the world together as Jonathan photographed cocktails for the book.

Lauren is a much sought-after consultant and expert in the global spirits industry and the Global On-Trade Director of PATRON Tequila. She is also a founding partner of the award-winning, internationally acclaimed cocktail bitter line ‘Bittered Sling.’ She has trained over 15,000 bartenders in 60 countries.

Now Lauren takes readers on a culinary cocktail trip around the world as she shares her favourite one-of-a-kind cocktail recipes, from places like Israel, Spain, Manila, the Black Forest in Germany, and more. Each cocktail is highlighted by stories behind the inspiration for the drinks.

A Bartender’s Guide to the World: Cocktails and Stories from 75 Places by Lauren and James O. Fraioli.

Cover and book design by Terri Nimmo. Cover and book photography by Jonathan Chovancek. Published by Appetite by Random House, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

“I grew up in Toronto and my family loved to get together and there was always great food and drinks,” says Lauren Mote. “My dad did Kosher Jewish food and my mom was from Britain and made traditional British food, so I began mixing flavours at a young age. The moment I was old enough to serve drinks (age 18) I started working at a bar. There was something about being on stage behind the bar that was like home to me. I have worked in every layer of bartending, from a beach bar to the Four Seasons to working with TV chefs like Rob Feenie.”

Lauren has tended bars globally and gathered stories along the way.

“I keep journals everywhere I go, and the inspiration behind this book was that after two decades in the industry I have done and seen so much, it’s a shame not to share it with others,” she says.

The book is designed for those who want to up their bartender skills,” says Lauren.

“There are plenty of books out there on how to make a classic gin and tonic, but this book is for someone who is more of a gourmand who wants to up their game,” she says. “While it’s a cocktail guide, it’s as much a periodical travel guide as well.”

Above Toronto’s Lauren Mote, has written her first book called A Bartender’s Guide to the World: Cocktails and Stories from 75 Places by Lauren and James O. Fraiol. photography by Jonathan Chovancek

When asked to name an iconic Canadian cocktail, Lauren answers: “The Caesar. The Double-Double Caesar in the book was inspired by a road trip in B.C. We used an Everything Bagel with cream cheese as a garnish!”

Asked to name a few of her favourite cocktails from the 75 in the book, Lauren answers: “Since I have an affinity to tequila, I would say The Family Affair, inspired in San Francisco; second would be The Greenish, a non-alcoholic take on the Tom Collins inspired by the flavours of Hong Kong.”

Closer to home, Lauren created the Yonge Street Cocktail in tribute to her family. It’s inspired by the Margarita and features blanco tequila, blue curacoa liqueur and fruit juices. “This cocktail is close to my heart because as a kid growing up with my two brothers and mom and dad in Toronto, it felt like we owned Yonge Street! We would visit the comic shops—my dad has over 70,000 comic books in his collection. It’s those memories and the memory of blue freezies from my childhood.”

Yonge Street Cocktail Recipe

Serves 1

Area of inspiration: Toronto, Ontario Inspired by: the Margarita

1 ounce (30 mL) blanco tequila

½ ounce (15 mL) blue curaçao liqueur

¾ ounce (22.5 mL) Orgeat (page 47) or store-bought orgeat syrup

¾ ounce (22.5 mL) fresh lime juice

¾ ounce (22.5 mL) fresh pineapple juice 2 dashes aromatic bitters

(like Bittered Sling Plum & Rootbeer)

Garnish: Thin slice dehydrated or fresh pineapple, pineapple fronds

Method

To a shaker filled with cubed ice, add the tequila, curaçao, orgeat, lime juice, pineapple juice, and bitters. Using some force, shake hard for 5 seconds. Using a small fine-mesh bar sieve to catch the loose ice chips, double strain into a highball glass. Garnish with the pineapple slice and fronds.

Excerpted from A Bartender’s Guide to the World: Cocktails and Stories from 75 Places by Lauren Mote and James O. Fraioli. Copyright © 2022 Lauren Mote and James O. Fraioli

Autumn & Eve Cocktail Recipe

Serves 1

Area of inspiration: Toronto, Ontario Inspired by: the Piña Colada

1 ounce (30 mL) gin

¾ ounce (22.5 mL) fino sherry

1½ ounces (45 mL) fresh pineapple juice

¾ ounce (22.5 mL) Tula Gingerbread Syrup (page 95)

½ ounce (15 mL) fresh lime juice

  1. scoop (45 mL) Pumpkin Spice Ice Cream (page 94)
  2. dashes chocolate bitters

(like Bittered Sling Malagasy Chocolate)

Garnish: Grated cinnamon

Method

To a shaker filled with cubed ice, add the gin, sherry, pineapple juice, syrup, lime juice, ice cream, and bitters. Using some force, shake hard for 5 seconds. Using a Hawthorne strainer, strain into a short, thin highball glass. Garnish with cinnamon.

Excerpted from A Bartender’s Guide to the World: Cocktails and Stories from 75 Places by Lauren Mote and James O. Fraioli. Copyright © 2022 Lauren Mote and James O. Fraioli

Although there are plenty of drinks to choose from for any occasion, Lauren has a few suggestions for celebrating the upcoming holiday season and winter months. “The Dancing Queen, which has blueberries and really cool spices; One Below which is a stirred Old Fashioned with Canadian rye whiskey, Islay Scotch whisky, maple syrup and chocolate bitters; and Autumn and Eve, a gin-based drink with sherry, pineapple and pumpkin spice ice cream. (Note: Kawartha Dairy has pumpkin ice cream this fall).

The book is being released this month. Lauren was as happy as a kid at Christmas when she saw her book in print. “It was even more beautiful than I thought it would be and to see Jonathan’s gorgeous photos in print is so amazing.”

Recipes and photos Excerpted from A Bartender’s Guide to the World: Cocktails and Stories from 75 Places by Lauren Mote and James O. Fraioli. Copyright © 2022 Lauren Mote and James O. Fraioli. Cover and book design by Terri Nimmo. Cover and book photography by Jonathan Chovancek. Published by Appetite by Random House, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

A Bartender’s Guide to the World: Cocktails and Stories from 75 Places is written by Lauren Mote and James O. Fraioli, with photography by Jonathan Chovancek. The book is published by Appetite by Random House, a division of Penguin Random House LLC.

by Laurie Wallace-Lynch

Other articles from totimes.ca – mtltimes.ca – otttimes.ca

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