Keenan ’s at the Pier and The Chrysalis Inn hosted the inaugural Bellingham Alive Sips of the Season event on the restaurant’s open air patio. Gentle ocean breezes, fun people, and remarkable hors d’ oeuvres and fantastic cocktails made for an unforgettable afternoon. Keenan’s staff members presented appetizers paired with each hand -crafted cocktail. They also demonstrated how to make each cocktail, advising guests to, “Shake it like you mean it” and thoroughly blend cocktail ingredients before pouring the libation into a prepared glass. Bellewood Distilling sponsored the event.

Lavender Collins

1.5 oz BelleWood Gin

.5 oz Lavender Syrup

.5 oz Lemon juice

The first cocktail in the lineup is the ever-popular Lavender Collins, a refreshing libation that was paired with lavender mint mousse garnished cucumber chip canapé. Top off with cold soda and garnish with fresh lavender sprigs. Measure into an ice-filled martini shaker then shake vigorously. The frothy libation is poured into a tall glass and served with cocktail straws.

Nuestra Paloma

1.5 oz El Jimador tequila

.5 oz Cynar

¾ oz Triple Sec

.5 oz fresh-squeezed lime juice

3 dashes of bitters to add depth and a bit of character

Nuestra Paloma is an elegant drink for those who love tequila. El Jimador is a reliable tequila to have on hand. Cynar is an Italian liqueur made from a blend of 13 plants including artichoke. It has a chestnut color and imparts a bittersweet flavor. Measure the following ingredients into a martini shaker, give it a few tosses, and then pour it int0cocktail glasses. Pair this beverage with a sweet corn canapé garnished with basil aioli and micro radish; rather like having a little salad bite with your cocktail! Although it would be easy to quaff several of these cocktails, one must balance indulgence with reason.

Final Say

Wild Turkey Rye

Yellow Chartreuse

Maraschino Cherry Liqueur

Lemon juice

Brandied cherry for garnish

Final Say is, as Keenan’s staff members pointed out, “fully leaded.” Keenan’s uses a Maraschino cherry imported from Italy. Be judicious when selecting preserved cherries for your version of this powerful cocktail— after one of these cocktails you won’t have to worry over who has the last word. Measuring this drink is easy: each ingredient is a ¾- ounce pour. Simply measure into an ice-filled shaker and shake the day lights out of it. Strain into cocktail glasses and garnish with a brandied cherry. This cocktail paired wonderfully with a carrot ginger mouse sprinkled liberally with Hawaiian sea salt.

London Bridge 9

1.5 oz BelleWood Honey Crisp Vodka

.5 oz St. Germain

¾ oz cranberry juice

.5 oz lemon juice

Few dashes of grapefruit bitters

Top off with Cock and Bull ginger beer

Can’t get to London this season? No need to cry a river, just treat yourself to a London Bridge 9! Paired with a coconut basmati rice cake with lemon aioli and micro basil, this cocktail hour combination will make everything right once again. Measure vodka, St. Germain, cranberry and lemon juice, and bitters into an ice-filled martini shaker and give it a whirl. Pour into cocktail glasses and finish off with a hefty pour of ginger beer.

Garden Variety

1.5 oz BelleWood Gin

3 or 4 fresh basil leaves

1 oz fresh grapefruit juice

½ fresh lime juice

¾ oz green tea syrup

Cold soda water

The Garden Variety soothes that urge to muddle something. Drop three or four fresh basil leaves into a martini shaker and muddle gently. Too vigorous of a muddling could bring out the basil’s less appealing bitter flavors. Keenan’s paired this cool and refreshing cocktail with an equally enjoyable zucchini basil shooter garnished with shaved candy beets. This is a combination worthy of seconds! No matter if you practice mixology yourself, or want to idle a few hours at Keenan’s at the Pier, treat yourself to a liquid indulgence with these phenomenal cocktails.


"Idle a few hours at Keenan’s at the Pier, treat yourself to a liquid indulgence with these phenomenal cocktails. "