OPA!

September 1, 2014 | Posted by Charlotte March

To kick off Mediterranean month at the B-Team, I’d like to offer you a cocktail, an Ouzo cocktail that is. Ouzo, a Greek spirit distilled from grapes and flavored with anise, is typically served as an aperitif and lends itself well to sipping straight, on the rocks, or my favorite, as a cocktail. If you're fan of anything remotely liquorice or fennel - this should be your next drink!

I didn’t think it would be terribly difficult to pick up some Ouzo, but my neighborhood wine shop said they only sell a few bottles every year around the holidays. So, I went to this place in Daly City.
(For those avid B Team followers you may remember that In-N-Out Burger post in June. Daly City is pret-ty awesome.)

Anyway, look at the all Ouzo at the aptly named Greek Imports. It was difficult to decide which ones to buy because who knew when I would be back. The owners had a few favorites, which they recommended, and I had sampled a several over the years at Kokarri in San Francisco (Note to Greek food lovers: You must eat at Kokarri when in San Fransicso). So, I whittled it down to three.

Also, on the opposite side of the store you can purchase one of several small marble statues. Michelangelo’s David features prominently (which is in Rome, but who cares)

When developing cocktail recipe I tried to hit on a few ingredients widely used in Greek food so I decided on honey, mint and citrus. These also seemed like they would play nicely with the heavy anise flavor of Ouzo.

Thus the Greek Beekeeper was born!

5 mint leaves
1/2 oz honey syrup*
3/4 oz lemon juice
2 oz ouzo
Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and add ice. Shake vigorously and then strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with a sprig of mint. Serves 1.

-Ouzo Of Plomari is very smooth and needs no water or ice to “open”.
-The Tsantali lent itself best to the cocktail.
-The owners of Greek Imports highly recommended Ouzo Aphrodite as they hailed from Barbayannis. Also, I couldn’t resist the label.

*To make the syrup, combine equal parts honey and how water and stir until honey is dissolved. Cool completely before using. Can be stored in airtight container in your refrigerator for 1 week.