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Photograph: Martha WilliamsOjos Rojos brunch cocktail at The Publican

Brunch cocktails at the Publican, Atwood Cafe and Owen & Engine | Trending

Restaurants move beyond the Bloody Mary.


Chicagoans have never had to look far for their next great cocktail. Unless, that is, they wanted that cocktail before noon. Which is why bartenders like Kyle Davidson of the Publican (837 W Fulton Market, 312-733-9555) have started crafting brunch cocktails that move beyond the mimosa and Bloody Mary. “When people go to dinner they consider where to eat, which wine to drink,” Davidson says. Now, “they’re starting to apply that thought process to brunch.” Davidson’s the Rose, which combines Herradura Silver tequila with grapefruit juice, Aperol and Cocchi (an Italian aperitif), fits his definition of a brunch cocktail: “low in alcohol, with juice or carbonation to refresh the palate.” So does the Spiced Blossom, which Atwood Cafe (1 W Washington St, 312-368-1900) executive chef Derek Simcik makes with apple cider, brandy-soaked cherries, a splash of St. Germain and cava. At Owen & Engine (2700 N Western Ave, 773-235-2930), beverage director Damien Vanier offers the Duchess, a sweet-tart sparkler mixing cava, strawberry liqueur and lime juice. All three work well with both sweet and savory flavors, making them foolproof pairs for the likes of eggs and doughnuts. (And secretly, they work pretty well without food, too.)

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