The Optimist

From the menu of … The Optimist, 914 Howell Mill Road, Atlanta; 404-477-6260;

Q. I recently enjoyed a celebration dinner at The Optimist. The meal got off to a great start with a cocktail called the Beach Shanty. I wonder whether their mixologist would be willing to share the recipe. — Donna Fearing, Sandy Springs

A. Indeed, Eduardo Guzman was willing to share. The combination will remind you of a shandy, a very traditional summer refresher. The ingredients may require a trip to a well-stocked liquor store, but the result is well worth it. Massenez Creme de Gingembre is a clear ginger-flavored French liqueur, and Velvet Falernum is a sweet mixture flavored with citrus and spices. At The Optimist they make their own, flavoring rum with lime peels, cloves, almond extract and sugar. Commercial varieties are available.

Is there a recipe from a metro Atlanta restaurant you’d like to make at home? Tell us and we’ll try to get it. We’ll also test it and adapt it for the home kitchen. Because of volume, we can’t answer all inquiries. Send your request, your address and phone number to and put “From the menu of” and the name of the restaurant in the subject line.

The Optimist’s Beach Shanty

Hands on: 5 minutes

Total time: 5 minutes

Serves: 1

2 tablespoons Brinley’s Gold Shipwreck Spiced Rum

4 teaspoons Massenez Creme de Gingembre

4 teaspoons lemon juice

1 1/2 teaspoons Velvet Falernum

2 dashes Fee Brothers Old Fashion Aromatic Bitters

Allagash White Ale, to top off glass

Lemon peel, for garnish

In a tall Collins glass, combine rum, ginger liqueur, lemon juice, Velvet Falernum and bitters. Top the mixture with beer and stir once to combine. Garnish with lemon peel and serve immediately.

Per serving: 170 calories (percent of calories from fat, 0), trace protein, 12 grams carbohydrates, trace fiber, no fat, no cholesterol, 2 milligrams sodium.