A Refreshing Summer Cocktail Meets Puppy Play Dates in D.C.

Meet Anna!  This featured artist is an old friend of mine from high school. Thanks to the Internet, we’ve remained in touch over the years. She c0-owns an award-winning little pet boutique called Metro Mutts in Washington, D.C.  I couldn’t let the  summer slip by without sharing more about her store – and one of her delicious  cocktail recipes  – with you!

Anna, with some of her Pineapple – Infused Hooch!

Tell us about Metro Mutts.
 I am Co-Owner of Metro Mutts in Washington, DC.  We are a high-end pet boutique with a focus on made in the USA products and healthy foods for cats and dogs.  We also do “Yappy Hours”, host adoption events, have puppy play dates, and  offer pet sitting and dog walking services.  The business has grown tremendously and we now have a second location in DC.

I had been a stay at home Mom to my kids for 8 years but always dreamed of owning my own business.  Metro Mutts started out as a fun way to ease back into working outside the home.  We got very busy very fast… turns out a really good pet shop can succeed in a recession!  Now it is a full-time gig (and then some), so my domestic side has adapted to being a little more efficient!

Who inspires you in the kitchen!
As far as who inspires me, I genuinely love Sandra Lee  from The Food Network – my friends make fun of this and say I am a better cook than she, but I appreciate her super sunny personality and the fact that she makes a cocktail with every meal!  I also like some of her shortcuts (for example rolling baklava instead of folding each and every triangle?  Brilliant!)
Great idea! More about cocktails, please!
I think a special drink with dinner or appetizer is so fun.  I recently have gotten into infusing vodka which looks beautiful on the counter (more details on infusing vodka in this article by Diana De Cicco on www.sheknows.com).

Vodka Infusion Image courtesy of SheKnows.com

1.) Cut up fruit
2) Add vodka in air-tight container
3) Let sit in cool dark place for  1-4 weeks
And then you always have an artisan-style drink to offer friends.
Sold! Give us a recipe!
Anna’s Strawberry Potion:
We go berry picking with the kids in the spring so I’ve made strawberry most recently.  Here is my newest signature cocktail … which one guest who said he doesn’t “do cocktails”, shortly after declared the “best drink ever”.
Infuse favorite vodka with strawberries for at least a week (and up to 30 days).  I use Tito’s vodka because it is gluten-free, but I also sometimes add a little bit of vanilla Whipped Vodka to it for added sweetness if I’m in the mood. (Beretta’s Note: Be careful if you are strictly gluten-free, since  flavored alcohols may sometimes contain gluten!)
  • 1 shot strawberry-infused vodka
  • 3-4 Fresh mint leaves for muddling, plus sprigs for garnish
  • 1 shot Rose’s lime juice
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp Cane sugar
  • 1/4c Soda water
  • 1/2c Prosecco
  • Fresh lime wedge (for rim and juice)
Muddle 3-4 fresh mint leaves in your cocktail shaker.
Combine all non-carbonated ingredients in a shaker of ice, shake, then slowly mix in soda water and Prosecco.
Rub lime wedge around rim of a large drinking glass (we use mason jars)
Dip glass rim in a dish of cane sugar to coat rim.
Add ice to bottom of mason jar.
Strain drink over ice and squeeze the  fresh lime  wedge on top.
Garnish with a fresh mint leaf and straw.
I’ll be testing some of Anna’s food recipes for my book! Stay tuned for more yummy goodness from Anna, and if you have pets, or know people who have pets, shop her store!
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