LuxeGetaways Magazine – Spring 2017 | I first met Bob Peters (known at Bob The Bartender) about a year ago while savoring the Punch Room experience with several friends. Located on the 15th floor of The Ritz-Carlton Charlotte, Punch Room is simply unexpected. The 37-seat lounge provides guests with an intimate experience, and the personalized attention you would expect while sitting back in one of the oversized couches and wingback chairs. While I was not around at the time of the infamous “speakeasies,” if I had to imagine how a posh and exclusive speakeasy would look, feel, sound and smell, this would be it.

You do not visit Punch Room for a beer or glass of wine (though both are available); you come here to have Bob The Bartender discover what it is that you want to enjoy that particular evening. Upon our first meeting (after he got past the fact that most of my drinks of choice included either a bold red wine or something with an umbrella in it), he further explored my likes and dislikes. The result was some kind of concoction that included espresso, bourbon and smoke; and while it was something that I would never order myself, it was not only delicious, but also a true cocktail experience that I would not soon forget.

With a loyal following, Bob has won numerous awards over the years, and has been featured in a number of national culinary and industry magazines. And let us just say that there is not another bartender in Charlotte with his reputation. He was jetting down to the Cayman Islands just after I saw him again during this visit to be the featured mixologist at the acclaimed Cayman Cookout Food Festival hosted by Eric Ripert, Jose Andres, and Anthony Bourdain. Having Bob at Punch Room makes the already luxuriously hip hotel that much more of an exclusive featured destination, and just one more reason to visit The Ritz-Carlton Charlotte.

Looking for inspiration when preparing a featured spring cocktail for us at LuxeGetaways, Bob decided that the Carbonated Aviation was a perfect (and delicious) solution. This drink has been a cult favorite since it appeared in “Recipes for Mixed Drinks” by Hugo Ensslin in 1916. Though there have been slight variations of this drink over the years with some omitting the Crème de Violet Liqueur and others trying to make it their own, we love that Bob added the element of carbonation – creating a refreshing and light cocktail that is full of flavor. Give it a try this season – cheers!

Carbonated Aviation

2 oz of Cardinal Gin
.5 oz of lemon juice
.25 oz of Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur
.25 oz of Crème de Violet Liqueur
Shake/double strain
Serve in a Nick & Nora glass with a homemade brandied cherry

The Ritz-Carlton Charlotte
201 East Trade Street
Charlotte, NC 28202

Punch Room
201 E Trade St.
Charlotte, NC 28202

Bob Peters

Visit to view the Spring 2017 Issue