By Alison Bailin Batz / Photo by Debby Wolvos
Each cocktail at Match Restaurant & Lounge, which is located inside Found:Re Phoenix, is a work of art in a glass.
“It’s only fitting then that we name each of them after actual artists, mostly painters,” says head bartender Randall Koenig.
One of the best-sellers since last fall when it was added to the menu is The Monet ($13).
“It’s our take on a Moscow mule and in homage to Oscar-Claude Monet,” Koenig says. “Monet was a French painter and one of the founders of impressionism, a 19th-century art movement focused on depicting something not as it literally appears, but the artist’s impression of it.”
The Monet is true to its name as it smells a bit like a traditional Moscow mule, yet looks and tastes like an artist’s interpretation of it.
“The cocktail starts with Stoli Vodka, a premium vodka made of wheat and rye grain,” Koenig says. “We then muddle in fresh watermelon and Cock’n Bull Ginger Beer, which brings a fresh effervescence to the mixture.”
After adding orange bitters and fresh-squeezed lime juice to balance the sweetness, Koenig shakes with ice and strains into a rocks glass over ice.
“We finish it with a skewer of fresh watermelon and mint sprig. The mint is essential in giving it that mule aroma, but it’s left out of the build to avoid overpowering other flavors,” he explains. “It also keeps the mint from getting in one’s teeth, which has happened to all of us while enjoying a classic mule.”
The result is fresh, fruity, bubbly and balanced.
Match Restaurant & Lounge, 1100 N. Central Ave., Phoenix; 602.875.8080; www.matchphx.com.