Gertrude's, the Baltimore Museum of Art's finest (and only) restaurant, debuted its summer cocktail menu last week. It's designed with refreshment in mind, with summery ingredients and an almost playful approach to flavors. And Gertrude's Desert Rose definitely fits the seasonal bill.
The Desert Rose is comprised of jalapeno-infused Alma tequila, watermelon syrup (made in-house), aloe juice and lime juice. The result could be described as a happy accident, according to bar manager Jon Carroll. "We had some elements left over from the spring cocktail menu and kind of messed around with them and came up with this," he said. "It seemed to work really well."
The aloe juice and the light fruity flavor from the watermelon syrup significantly mellow out the spicy jalapeno heat on the front end, while perfectly complementing the lime tartness on the back end. It's almost like a margarita, but — if such a thing were even possible — is even more refreshing.
The Desert Rose is not a part of the official cocktail menu and is instead part of the "Special Cocktails" menu, indicating that once these ingredients comprising the Desert Rose are gone, the drink may not come back. So if you're in the market for a truly tasty summer beverage and a classic museo-atmosphere, beat feet to Gertrude's as soon as you can. Just don't try to beat the summer heat by jumping into the fountain while seated outside. They frown on that.
How to make the Desert Rose
1 1/2 oz. jalapeno infused Alma tequila
1 1/2 oz. watermelon simple syrup
1 1/2 oz. aloe juice
1/2 oz. lime juice
Combine all ingredients, shake and pour over ice. Garnish with a lime wedge for color.
Where to get the Desert Rose
10 Art Museum Drive (inside the Baltimore Museum of Art), Charles Village
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