Name-checking the water theme park at Disney World, this citrus-forward refresher, served in a lagoon-like mini coupe, is far more sophisticated – not to mention tasty – than any brilliantly blue, Curaçao-tinted cocktail you’ve likely sipped before. It’s the handiwork of Libby Lingua and Mitch Lyons of Two Hands Consulting, the mixology mercenaries who own and operate Highball while creating quality cocktail programs for other bars and restaurants. It’s also compelling proof of their considerable talent and patience.
As the menu promises, this one is “geeky” and “vibrant,” beginning with its trendy base liquors of pisco (Peruvian grape brandy, infused, in this case, for 24 hours at room temperature with frozen mango) and shochu (Japan’s clear, grain- and vegetable-distilled spirit). Fresh grapefruit and lemon juices, plus a touch of aromatic bottled yuzu juice, embellish and enliven the bitter orange notes of the Curaçao, while ginger root syrup and tarragon tincture (both house-made) lend notes of peppery spice and earthy anise. Chuncho bitters (the classic accompaniment to a pisco sour) brings additional spice notes and balance, while a few finishing drops of infused lemon-tarragon oil leave tiny floating beads across the cocktail’s unrippled surface.
The best thing to do when confronted by this Class 5 cyclone of flavor? Dive right in.
Highball Cocktail Bar
1514 N. Seventh Ave., Phoenix