Utah Opera offers ‘Libretti & Libations’
Utah Opera is excited to announce the launch of "Libretti & Libations," a partnership with Salt Lake City’s top mixologists to create craft cocktails inspired by the current opera production of Puccini’s "Madame Butterfly."
Rye Diner & Drinks, Finca, Pallet Bistro and Takashi Sushi will offer "Madame Butterfly"-inspired craft cocktails at their restaurant locations during the month of October, as a way of creating an intersection between food and drink, and opera. Visit http://www.utahopera.org/libations for more information.
"We wanted people to have another creative way of connecting with an art form as diverse and all-encompassing as opera," said Renée Huang, Utah Syphony|Utah Opera public relations director. "There is so much passion involved in food, drink and music that creating craft cocktails inspired by the themes and characters in our operas seemed like a great way to illustrate that connection."
Libretto refers to the spoken word portion of the opera, and as patrons enjoy their libations at the participating "Libretti & Libations" restaurants, they have the chance to read a portion of libretto from the current opera.
People can also enter a social media contest sponsored by Salt Lake Magazine to win a pair of tickets by sharing a photo of their libation on Twitter or Instagram and tagging #UtahOperaSips. This month’s winner will attend the Friday, Oct. 17, evening performance of Puccini’s Madame Butterfly at Capitol Theatre.
Bartender Davy Bartlett of Finca, 1291 S. 1100 East, created the "Pinkerton Interpretation B," a bourbon and vermouth-based drink that incorporates seasonal ingredients such as plum and ginger.
Says Bartlett: "The combination of a truly American spirit, bourbon, and the common Japanese flavors of ginger and plum created, to me, a cocktail that is easy to drink with great depth but it still packs a punch. I felt that this reflected a common interpretation of Lt. Pinkerton’s character. He can be seen as a reckless and irresponsible yet well-meaning man who doesn’t realize the depth of Butterfly’s devotion until it’s too late."
A white rose petal that represents "Butterfly’s" innocence garnishes "Un Bel Di," a creation of mixologist Bijan Ghiai from Pallet Bistro, 237 S. 400 West. The drink is comprised of Yamazaki single malt, Campari and Ransom sweet vermouth and rose water with an absinthe rinse at Pallet Bistro.
Mixologist Ryan Manning of Rye Diner & Drinks, 239 S. 500 East, created a hot almond milk-based drink of Jackrabbit gin and honey-infused Amaretto green tea that symbolized Butterfly’s yearning for comfort while she waited for Pinkerton’s return.
"Cio-Cio spent three years waiting in solitude. I imagine her longing on a grassy Nagasaki hillside and seeking solace over countless cups of tea," said Manning.
Takashi Sushi, 18 W. Market St., will have a cocktail called "Cio-Cio San" that features whiskey, cherry and ume liquor and sake.
Established by Glade Peterson in 1978, Utah Opera has been part of the community for more than 35 years and provides Utah’s citizens with distinguished quality productions that showcase emerging and established artists, celebrate traditional works, and champion the American operatic tradition.
The company presents four annual productions at the historic Janet Quinney Lawson Capitol Theatre, 50 W. 200 South.
Utah Opera operates a full production studio where productions are rehearsed and costumes, props and sets are designed, made, rented out and stored. The opera, which currently has 17 full sets and costumes for 45 full productions in its inventory, also offers a Resident Artist Program, a nationally recognized young artist training program for professional singers and pianists who perform for more than 65,000 students each year through the organization’s education department.
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