Introducing Swallow’s Bitters


I am proud to be contributing to a sweet ‘lil fundraiser for Sarah Mangle’s Gay Aunt Video Project, called the Homestead Film Project! Generally, at these monthly events, you can see in-progress, experimental playful shit. In Sarah’s words, come be a part of a generous awesome audience and witness exciting, great things!

On the night of Sunday April 7 only, the Holy Oak’s bartenders will be serving The Young Witch, a springtime manhattan designed by me. Featuring house-made cedar bitters with dandelion and plantain, this very green herb-infused cocktail whispers of early leaf buds and rising sap, the time between evergreens and summer leaves. While the cocktail is very much about territory—the rye from my home province of Alberta, the cedar (Thuja occidentalis) indigenous to North America and the dandelion (Taraxacum officinalis) and plantain (Plantago major) both weedy city plants that arrived here with the first waves of European settlers—this is not about a purist, 100-km ethic. It’s based on the ethic of whatever we make from the things we have on hand is simply the best kind of magic for this place, this moment.

I come to bitters and to cocktails not as a bartender but as an artist, via my kitchen and my apothecary. As a settler-identified inhabitant of Turtle Island, plants are the primary way that I learn about territory, both in terms of my history, my present and my responsibilities. And plants allow me to do this in a joyful, mindful and curious way. At the Holy Oak, as this territorial reflection loostens your grip on reality just a little, I invite you to join me in absorbing what the plants have to tell you. This is an experiential learning quite other than reading about plants or listening to someone speak about them. Those modes of engagement are pretty boring to plants and they’d much rather we smoke them, eat them, drink them or rub them on our bodies (in the words of the wise Dori Midnight).

$1 from every cocktail will go directly to supporting the Homestead Film Project.

Show admission is 5 to 10 dollars sliding scale. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.
The Holy Oak Cafe is on the ground floor and does not have any steps to the front door, but the bathroom is down a flight of stairs.

The FB invite is here.

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