Russian Standard Serves Up Sumptuous Cocktails at The Dutch [Gallery]

By Shayne Benowitz

In Russia, when you’re surrounded with good company, delicious food, and, of course, plenty of vodka, it’s customary to toast not only at the beginning of the meal and, perhaps, at the end, but continuously throughout. This was the atmosphere that Russian Standard Vodka invoked in a private dining room at The Dutch inside the W Hotel South Beach last night.

The group of Miami media and influencers — including mixologists Hillary Choo and Gui Jaroschy, The Gale’s managing partner Josh Wagner, and Urban Daddy editor Sara Liss — gathered  at the bar to mingle over Moscow Mules before sitting down for dinner. A guided tasting of Russian Standard’s collection of vodkas commenced with the Original, Platinum, Gold, and Imperia.

The Dutch mixologist Robert Ferrara created three signature Russian Standard cocktails to accompany the three course dinner. First, was the Bungalow #8 served in a Collins glass with orange juice and freshly muddled strawberries over crushed ice. The drink was light and refreshing, and the perfect accompaniment to the trio of salads and ceviche served family style. As the meal unfolded, impromptu toasts were, indeed, said as glasses clinked with cheers of nastrovje (to life!) and davai (let’s party!) — l’chaim was even thrown in for good measure.

For the main course, Ferraro served the Watermelon Crush in a rocks glass, made with fresh watermelon, cilantro, jalapeño, lemon, and cracked black pepper. The mild heat of the drink brought out the nuanced flavors of the jerk chicken and Maine diver scallops. Finally, a medley of desserts was accompanied with a creamy tan Russian, Ferraro’s riff on the classic White Russian, made with mole for added color and flavor.

Images by Shayne Benowitz