Ask a bartender for their appletini recipe and you will quickly find out that everyone has their very own special way to make it. What the hell??? You’d think a simple cocktail like that would be pretty standard from place to place. After intensive research (someone has to do it!) I got quite the list of varied ingredients and suggestions on how to make the perfect appletini. Please let me share.
On our first stop, the Templeton diner that was recommended on Yelp as having “character” certainly did as it was in the rough section of Vancouver next to a TripleXXX peep show establishment. Most tourists would run the opposite way if they found themselves in this type of neighborhood in a foreign country. Not us-we embraced it and took photos! Now, a diner known for burgers and milkshakes might not be the best place to try out appletini’s but, you betcha, we did just that. Nothing goes better with a plate of poutine than an appletini!
Our lovely waitress shared her unique recipe—vodka, peach schnapps and apple juice. Crazy tasty! Paired with plates of poutine and salads/burgers plus milkshakes for the boys, we had quite the feast and laughed ourselves silly over our choice of fine dining experiences the first night in Vancouver. We know how to have a good time-pick a shabby diner next to a peep show with a jukebox and liquor.
After our walking tour of Gastown the next day, we were starving and conveniently close by my favorite restaurant in Vancouver-the Water Street Café. Quite the opposite atmosphere from the prior night’s diner, this café had the white table cloth vibe going on and was in a historic gorgeous building. I had been there multiple times when in town on business and always get the same thing-salmon risotto. So delicious but how would their appletini’s taste???
Another lovely waitress shared her bartender’s ingredients—vodka, apple sour puss liquor, simple syrup and a drop of lime juice. Now, I’ve never made simple syrup but she suggested a 1/3 raw sugar to 2/3 hot water formula. Even with the syrup, the appletini’s we were tasting were still not as sweet as the ones in Shanghai. The quest for the perfect appletini continued later that day at our hotel because having an appletini at lunch just wasn’t enough.
The bartender at the Marriott Pinnacle was most accommodating to talk us through his appletini creation that included vodka, pineapple juice and fresh lime topped with a slice of apple. Now, he very quietly told us that he prefers apple juice to pineapple juice but the Marriott chain forces him to use pineapple-how dare they stifle his cocktail creativity! He also suggested we could use agave to sweeten it up if we preferred. When I asked him why the appletinis in Shanghai were so very green instead of the light green we were seeing at his bar, he suggested that perhaps they used a tamarin syrup with agave muddled together to “green it up” a little. I appreciated his honesty and sharing of tips.
Now, all appletinis are good (just as there is no bad wine or pie) but the quest must now continue in Seattle. I hear that Canon on Capitol Hill was named the 6th best bar in the world. Who knew??? I MUST check it out. Also dying to run to the liquor store in the U.S. to see if they have Sour Puss in stock or if that is just a Canadian odd liquor….l’ll be looking for that black mean ass kitty on the bottle and then I’ll know I have the right stuff!