Drink This: a fruit brandy cocktail from Rakia Bar
By Karolyne Ellacott
Rakia Bar's Petőfi at front, and the Andrić at far left (Image: Caroline Aksich)
Rakia Bar has only been open since August, but owner Dusan Varga’s east-end ode to one of Europe’s most notorious tipples is already a hit. With seemingly endless types of rakia (a.k.a fruit brandy) on offer, there is something bound to please every palate — even the most delicate. Although traditionally the stuff is consumed with a tiny plate of fruit, cured meats or cheeses, patrons can switch things up and sip on rakia-infused cocktails instead.
We opted for two beverages crafted by David Gulyas, the resident bartender who bonded with Varga over their mutual love of rakia and good food. The Petőfi ($11) matches plum and juniper rakias with Amaro Averna and house-made spiced cherry syrup.
“I grew up eating sour cherries,” Gulyas says, who originally hails from Hungary. “This is the taste of my childhood combined with my love of Manhattans and Negronis.”
Meanwhile, the Andrić ($11) is a medley of plum brandy, vanilla, egg white and ginger, which keeps it from veering into too-sweet territory. If these don’t stave off the November chill, we don’t know what will.
Rakia Bar, 1402 Queen St. E., 416-953-7862
Other must-try Toronto cockails:
The Drake Hotel’s Deliverance
The Corpse Reviver No. 2 from SpiritHouse
The Bubbly Sue from SPiN Toronto