food + drink

World Travel through Potions and Elixirs

Cindy's Spirit Guide takes you through potions and elixirs


Cindy's Spirit Guide Nandini Khaund

Cindy’s Spirit Guide Nandini Khaund

OCTOBER 2017 – The drink menu at Cindy’s pulls from global inspirations while looking locally to procure many ingredients. If you spend any time looking at the drink descriptions, including the non-alcoholic offerings, you’ll see that our Spirit Guide, Nandini Khaund, is passionate about what goes into her concoctions. She carefully sources all the ingredients, works with her team to create a wonderful array of drinks and takes the time to write out mini stories for each. From time to time, we get a peek inside her creative mind to see why certain things appear on the list. Here, Nandini reveals a bit about the Spanish influence on the list. We’ll let her explain … it just sounds so much better when she does.

“Spanish vibes resonate through the drink menu at Cindy’s in our attempt to bring a touch of escapism to go with our mesmerizing view. This month, we’d like to delve into our Spanish inspirations.

Our Pillar of Hercules (and its no-proof version, the Virgin Pillar) incorporates a shrub made from Sevilla orange, Spanish cantaloupe, pineapple, honeydew and hibiscus. The cocktail features Manzanilla, a variety of fino sherry made in Sanlúcar de Barrameda. 

Santa Sangre means “Holy Blood” in Spanish — it’s our version of a bloody mary. It features mezcal, which is Mexican, but it is garnished with distinctively Spanish treats such as chorizo, manchego cheese and our favorite, the Gordal olive. The name Gordal (“the fat one”) is due to its shape (rounded) and to its weight (over six grams). Its production area is mainly in the province of Sevilla. We also use this flavorful and magical olive in our martinis.

The Bamboo is a classic cocktail and it’s basically a sherry martini. We use Lustau ‘Los Arcos’ amontillado, which is a sherry that has progressed beyond the dry style of fino and is richer and darker with subtle nuttiness. The combination of the sherry and the Gordal olive garnish is elegant and delicious.

Finally, we utilize Spanish inspiration in our Spanish Gin Tonic, where botanicals are allowed to shine in a wine glass. We harvest seasonal garnishes from our garden to go with our custom fennel-calamansi tonic. It ranges from basil and geranium and hyssop to oregano flowers and hibiscus leaves. We also dehydrate spent oranges from our Old Fashioneds to add a touch of citrus to the blend. It’s an aromatic faceful of awesomeness!”

From The Vault

CAF's Lynn Osmond's Chicago – Part II Bar Hopping for Fall Cocktails Dynasty Podcasts' Patrick's Playlist: Lollapalooza 2017 Edition Chicago Ideas & Open House Add Culture in October
 Chicago Opens it Doors Intimate OWEN Show at CAA's Stagg Court Look Around the Pre-Hotel Chicago Athletic Association