The Sweet Taste of Spring
by Kim O’Brien Root
photography by Keith Lanpher
The name itself invokes feelings of springtime.
Picket Fence – a cocktail offered by tapas restaurant Six in the Hampton community of Phoebus – is a light, crisp concoction that brings to mind green grass, picnics and wide-brimmed hats.
The name came in a dream to bartender Stephanie Rolla, who spent a few weeks perfecting her creation. Muddled apples and basil combine with Hendrick’s gin, and elderflower and French ginger liqueurs, while a splash of ginger ale adds a bit of fizz.
Colored the lightest of greens, Picket Fence lingers on the tongue – sweet and tart at the same time. The Hendrick’s adds hints of juniper, citrus, coriander, even cucumber.
The drink is one of the latest in the lineup at the restaurant, a sister to Crackers and Empire in Norfolk, and named for its address on East Mellen Street. It also takes some time to prepare. But as Rolla puts it: “Don’t you want something to your drink?”