Gina Chersevani sees similarities between showing off as a mixologist and a peacock.
“When their feathers aren’t showing, it’s not much to look at. When they open their feathers, there’s this beautiful thing,” says the owner of Last Call and Buffalo & Bergen. Her upcoming cocktail series at the latter’s Capitol Hill location is fittingly named Rising Peacock. “I’ve been doing cocktails my entire career, and I want to flip it a bit, and I want to be a little bit more showy with things that may not be so pretty,” says Chersevani.
The cocktails will utilize unusual ingredients. Take “The Nest,” which comes with gin, Vermouth, and pickled quail eggs, and the “Molly Malone,” another gin-and-Vermouth concoction, this one with cockles. The series will debut at Buffalo & Bergen early next year and move around to her other venues.
Rising Peacock is partially inspired by Chersevani’s recent win on the Food Network series, “Guy’s Grocery Games,” where contestants prepare meals with odd ingredients in a limited amount of time— all in a grocery store. She won the November 24 “Fruit Fest” episode after making dishes like apricot jam-glazed scallops and grilled peaches with ricotta. Chersevani scored $18,999 from the episode and split the proceeds between employees at her four restaurants: Buffalo & Bergen (Union Market and Capitol Hill), Suburbia, and Last Call. Why?
“Because they show up every day.”