Samantha Supinger: Bartender, Mirabelle Tavern

mirabelle tavern

Supinger’s cocktails at Mirabelle are just peachy. image: niko krommydas

A transplant from the Sunshine State, Supinger loves creating seasonally expressive cocktails. She told Pulse how roasted peaches make a helluva twist on an Old Fashioned.

Pulse: How did you start bartending?
Supinger:
When I was 14, I started working at Ragtops Motorcars in West Palm Beach. It was an antique car museum that doubled as a cool venue that would hold all sorts of parties. I started out as a greeter there, dressing as a fifties girl or flapper. But nothing sparked my interest more than seeing the bartender making drinks. After Ragtops I started training behind the bar of a local brewpub and got hooked.

What did you love about bartending?
I found it was a great way to express myself. My father was an artist at one time and that inspired me to look at [bartending] as an art.

What’s the difference between bartending in Florida versus New York?
In Florida it was a lot of tropical flavors and light cocktails. But here I need to try to match flavors to the various seasons. There’s no way I would ever recommend a light rum cocktail in autumn. Different seasonal changes call for different tastes.

What winter warmer are you making right now?
I try to incorporate a lot of brown spirits in our cocktail menu because of the comfortable atmosphere we have. Plus, I always seem to be cold, so I like to make drinks that keep you warm. [Laughs.] I’ve been on a big bourbon kick lately. I came up with a twist on the classic Old Fashioned using caramelized and roasted peaches that we sauté with a few cloves and a cinnamon stick. In a rocks glass I add two peaches—soft, with a muddled appearance—and about a quarter- ounce of a peach simple syrup that we also make. Then I add Makers Mark, Punt e Mes and a small splash of fresh lemon juice before rolling it and topping it off with seltzer, a dash of bitters and a cinnamon-sprinkled lemon wedge for a garnish. You can taste really every note.

niko krommydas

Niko Krommydas has written for Tasting Table, BeerAdvocate, Munchies, and First We Feast. He is editor of Craft Beer New York, an app for the iPhone, and a columnist for Yankee Brew News. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.