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Susan Axelrod

Susan Axelrod's food writing career began in the kitchen; she owned a restaurant and catering business for 15 years before turning to journalism. By day, she is the social media editor for Portland Press Herald. To relax, she bakes, gardens and hikes with her husband and their two dogs, preferably followed by a cocktail or a Maine beer. Susan can be contacted at 791-6310 or On Twitter: @susansaxelrod

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Posted: October 9, 2013

Cool cocktail events coming up at Portland Hunt & Alpine Club

Written by: Susan Axelrod

Photo courtesy Art in the Age

If you’re a cocktail geek, or simply an adventurous drinker, you’ll want to mark your calendar for three upcoming evenings at Portland’s newest cocktail bar. The proprietors of Portland Hunt & Alpine Club, 75 Market St. are hosting events with Art in the Age, Caledonia Spirits and Fernet Branca, each of which will feature special cocktails. Here are the details:

Art in the Age Cocktail Night

Thursday, Oct. 10, 4 to 7 p.m.

Philadelphia-based Art in the Age makes four distinctive spirits: Root, Snap, Rhubarb Tea and Sage. Each has an interesting back story and all are made from organic ingredients. The distillery’s first release, Root, is based on the botanical recipe for what was the original root beer, before the booze was removed thanks to the Temperance movement. Snap tastes like an alcoholic version of a really good gingersnap cookie. But none of these spirits are especially sweet, so it should be interesting to see what can be done with them in cocktails.

Caledonia Spirits Night

Thursday, Oct. 17, 4 to 6 p.m.

At Caledonia, in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, beekeeper and naturalist Todd Hardie makes Barr Hill honey vodka, gin and elderberry cordial. The gin is reported to be so smooth you can drink it on its own. Not this evening, however, when you’ll want to enjoy it in an expertly mixed cocktail.

Fernet Branca Industry Night

Sunday, Oct. 20, 6 p.m. to 1 a.m.

The intensely bitter Italian liqueur is a restaurant industry after-hours favorite — in fact, the practice of drinking a shot of Fernet followed by a soda or beer chaser is known in the business as a “bartender’s handshake.” At this event, you can spin the Fernet Wheel of Swag to win cool stuff.


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