A garden inspired cocktail competition hits Montecito’s Lotusland

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Lotusland, the 37-acre estate of the late Madame Ganna Walska tucked away in Montecito, is best known for its whimsical maze of diverse botanical gardens. But, this weekend, the gardens will take a backstage as six Santa Barbara bartenders battle it out.

At Spirit of Lotusland, each mixologist will create a cocktail inspired by a different garden within the property.

KCRW met up with contender Kyle Peete, a bartender at Alcazar and Milk & Honey, as he stopped by the Santa Barbara Farmers Market to plan for the competition. He’s been assigned the Cactus Garden.

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Alcazar chef Alvaro Rojas and bartender Kyle Peete sample pineapple guavas at Catlin Ranch’s farmstand. (Kathryn Barnes/KCRW)

Here are some of Kyle’s favorite farmers market inspired cocktails:

Yin & Yuz

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1 small bunch of cilantro

3-4 cubes of watermelon

Pinch of salt

1oz yuzu

1/2oz orange blossom honey

2oz of Cutler’s gin

Shaken and served up in a small coup garnished with a cilantro leaf

 

 

img_2970Ring around the Rosemary

 

1 heaping bar spoon of Mamas apricot and jalapeño jam

Pinch of rosemary

1/2 oz lemon juice

1-2 dashes of bitters

2oz Cutlers stagecoach whiskey or bourbon

Shaken and served on the rocks with a lemon twist, jalapeño wheel, and sprig of rosemary

 

To check out all our past farmers market segments, head to kcrw.com/meetatthemarket.