Toronto's new Ritz-Carlton Hotel opened in February and practically everything about it, from the contemporary Canadiana decor to the emphasis on local cuisine to the hotel bar TOCA (named for Toronto, Canada - get it?), is infused with a healthy dose of patriotism.
Among the tastiest nods to the Great White North is TOCA's Ritz Streetcar, created by head bartender Moses McIntee. "I wanted to take the Sidecar and make it unique so I called it a Streetcar after the ubiquitous Red Rockets on our city's streets," says McIntee, who uses Earl-Grey-tea-infused Cointreau to personalize the old recipe.
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1 ounce Crown Royal Reserve
1 ounce Earl-Grey-tea-infused Cointreau
1 ounce fresh squeezed lemon juice
Half-ounce simple syrup
To make his concoction, place eight Earl Grey tea bags in a container with an ounce of hot water, then pour a 750-millilitre bottle of Cointreau in and cover overnight. In the morning, strain the infusion back into a bottle. To complete the cocktail, combine an ounce of the infusion with the remaining ingredients over ice in a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously for about 20 seconds. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass rimmed with bergamot-infused sugar and stand on guard.