MIXOLOGY: A Balancing Act When it Comes to Heavy Food

In In The Kitchen, Magazine, Miscellaneous, Recipes by RI Magazine

The heavier fare featured on Restaurant: Impossible needs the perfect cocktail to cleanse your palate. We’ve got just the thing.


This month, we tackle how to pair cocktails with your heavy, rich, and classic greasy spoon foods. After all, if you’re planning to splurge your cheat day calories on any of Robert’s new Restaurant: Impossible recipes (like THIS ONE) you’ll need something suited to the task at hand.

Do you ever wonder why a Margarita tastes so good with tacos and nachos? Or a Mojito at a cookout? This is because the acid in the citrus juice cleanses your tongue of the heavy oils in the food you eat, from cheeseburgers to tacos. Think of it like the tannins of wine, but in a more refreshing, less pretentious manner. Pro-tip: a classic daiquiri or gimlet is a better way to get rid of the burning sensation from hot peppers than milk for this same reason because capsaicin is an oil.

You don’t want to do anything too sweet or artificial. No sour mix or bottled juices. This will keep your palate clean and actually enhance your dining experience when eating heavier foods. Best of all, every bite will have that “first bite” sensation.

Try this great blend of a Gimlet and Mojito at your next cookout:

Arrogant Bastard
2 oz Boardroom Gin (or other bright citrusy gin)
.75 oz Lime Juice
.75 oz Simple Syrup
4-6 mint leaves
Add all ingredients to a shaker tin, add ice and shake. Strain into Collins glass. Top with club soda.

Garnish with a mint sprig and float 2-3 dashes of Angostura bitters for aromatics and added complexity to accentuate the taste of the cocktail. Note that the photo on this page shows the cocktail with a healthy dose of Angostura bitters. The cocktail will be relatively clear without them.