Friday, August 21, 2015

Wabi Sabi and Liberty Bar (Laura)

Wabi Sabi. Oil on panel, 8" x 8".

The best day at the Bellevue Arts Museum Artsfair was the day before the Bellevue Arts Museum Artsfair.

Paul and I set up in record time, then took off to try the Seattle cocktail recommendations of several friends. One place everyone agreed on was Liberty on Seattle's Capitol Hill. This low-key neighborhood bar and sushi stop turned out to be the single friendliest spot I have visited. In one evening, we came away with five recipes from two different bartenders, Willi and Laura.

Willi served us first, and that experience gets its own future blog post (once I do his drinks justice!). As we left for an art exhibit, he introduced us to Laura Bishop. Laura, herself an artist, liked the idea of the book project and wanted to contribute, so we promised to return.

Upon our arrival back at Liberty, Laura served three original drinks, all beautifully garnished (apparently the Liberty custom—more on that later). The first, the Wabi Sabi, combined green-tea-infused gin with lemon, simple and thyme for a fresh, summery taste that I instantly loved. Laura was so helpful and all of her drinks so delicious, I plan to include at least one more of them in the book. Stay tuned!

Laura demonstrates her mad garnish skills

About the painting:
Inspired by the Japanese moniker, I wanted to keep this painting simple. I googled Japanese textiles and found this vintage pattern, which I printed out for a backdrop. I already knew I wanted to use my best-ever-find cut-glass coupes (7 for $5 at a rummage sale!), so the perfect pairing of cut-glass pattern and bamboo-leaf print was a happy accident. The glass sits on a green-enameled metal wall tile, scavenged years ago from an old school. This brought the bright green color up into the stem and added green reflections to the bowl of the glass, all to tie in with the thyme-sprig garnish. But the real star of the show is the glow of the green tea gin and lemon against the dark background.

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