Sip and be sustainable

The Abundance Foundation in Pittsboro, N.C. is the group that sponsors the spicy Pittsboro Pepper Festival each year. The organization promotes sustainability, local food, renewable energy, stronger community – all that stuff that makes me feel like I should be wearing a tie-dyed T-shirt as I write this. But these people know food, and have been making those issues taste good for years. And that’s great by me.

Their latest event is coming up on Friday evening, and you can read more about that here. What caught my eye on the menu: the Dogwood Martini. It’s a combination of vodka and – persimmons. It’s the creation of Gary Phillips, a member of the Abundance Foundation board. Phillips is also on the board of Dogwood Alliance, an Asheville, N.C.-based group that promotes sustainable forestry and highlights poor forestry practices. The Friday party is being held in conjunction with Dogwood Alliance to help the two groups work together.

But here’s what you want to know – the Dogwood Martini, courtesy of Gary Phillips: Place 1 tablespoon persimmon puree (Phillips uses fruit from his yard), 2 ounces organic vodka, 1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint leaves and ice in a cocktail shaker. Shake vigorously until an ice haze permeates the shaker. Strain into a martini or sherry glass.. Top gently with 1 ounce chilled Champagne.