Where: Bonterra Italian Bistro, 98 Main St., Southington
Ingredient: Lemon sorbet, vodka and strawberries
I had had enough of winter. Of a dreary brown and gray landscape. Of co-workers hacking around me with the latest version of the flu. Of ice and rain and snow and the simply felling of "ick" that goes with this time of year when it seems like surely this is the year when winter will never end.
It was a job-related exercise that brought me to the bar at Bonterra Italian Bistro, the downtown Southington eatery owned by Barry DePaolo and wife, Cheryl Moran. And as I sat there, lo and behold...a ray of summer hope in the form of a drink...the Berry Scropino. Frankly it was the word "berry" that whet my whistle. You know strawberries, summer, pink. You get the picture.
Fresh lemon sorbet blended with vodka and strawberries filled the bill when it came to mentally replacing the reality of a 27-degree February evening with vague recollections of 85 degrees and July at the beach. The drink looked like a strawberry daiquiri but not quite as sweet, thanks to the sorbet and vodka. Even with the recipe variations, it was still without a doubt a summer drink - one that could obliterate thoughts of winter, even if just for a few moments, making it well worth the $7 price as far as I was concerned.
Open for just a few months, the restaurant offers a host of other drinks for those who can't escape the reality of a New England winter but are looking for a pleasant place to go and forget about the chilly weather. The $8.50 Sicilian Pomegranate Martini features an appealing combination of Absolut citron, pomegranate juice, limoncello, fresh lime juice and triple sec. The Basil Gimlet is a creative twist on classic, featuring muddled basil, lime juice sugar and Absolut for $9.
- MARYELLEN FILLO