Artini 2011 Edition: POV's Joan’s Palette

Watch bartender Joe Ambrose make Joan's Palette here. Or try it yourself at POV's feature night on March 31.

By: Melissa Romero

Artini is a monthlong competition among 12 of the area’s top mixologists to create the most artistic martini. This year, various pieces in the Corcoran Gallery of Art inspired the bartenders’ cocktail creations. Every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday through March 31, one competing drink will be featured for tasting at different venues from 6:30 to 8:30. Twenty percent of each venue’s sales benefit the Corcoran’s exhibition programming.

Here at After Hours, we’ll showcase some of the cocktails.

For more information about Artini, the featured nights, or to vote for your favorite bartender, go to washingtonian.com/artini.

Just in time for spring, POV bartender Joe Ambrose has created Joan’s Palette, a citrus cocktail inspired by Joan Mitchell’s 1979 Salut Tom oil canvas.

“I’m not an expert in abstract art,” Ambrose admits, “but the colors in the pomelo grapefruit represent the colors in the photo. And because we’re approaching spring, I wanted to make a light drink that is kind of citrusy.”

The “citrusy” part of Ambrose’s creation comes from the lime and grapefruit juice, but the elderflower liqueur “pulls everything in well together.” The black lava salt adds a nice touch to the rim of the martini glass as an artful nod to the black strokes in Mitchell’s canvas.  

Watch Ambrose make Joan’s Palette here, and be sure to get a taste of it at POV’s Feature Night on Thursday, March 31 at the W Washington DC Hotel (515 Fifthteenth St., NW; 202-661-2478).

Joan’s Palette
Joe Ambrose, POV

3/4 ounce pomelo syrup
1/2 ounce lime juice
3/4 ounce grapefruit juice
Dash of ginger
1/2 ounce St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur
1/2 ounce Hayman’s Old Ton and Gin
1 1/2 ounce Zubrowka Bison Grass Vodka
Black lava salt
Pomelo peel
Lime slice

Wet the rim of a martini glass with the lime slice. Line half of the rim with black lava salt. Pour the pomelo syrup, lime juice, grapefruit juice, ginger, elderflower liqueur, gin, and vodka into a separate glass. Add ice and shake the mixture. Strain it into the martini glass. Garnish with the pomelo peel.