written by Val Rasmussen | photos by Adam Finkle

These days, alcohol isn’t just reserved for the bar.

Wine, beer and spirits instill flavor into dishes like rosé ice cream, whiskey-infused cheese and wine-braised short rib. Spirits can be added to one item—like a bourbon-glazed sous vide pork tenderloin with grilled peaches, rosemary potatoes and baby squash—or to the entire dish—like vanilla cupcakes with red wine buttercream garnished with fresh fruit and a pipette of sangria. Seared salmon with rosé reduction, fresh grape, basil and shallot relish is another unique entree.

“Taking elements from classic cocktails and turning them into a dessert is another fun idea,” says Cuisine Unlimited’s Derek Dietsch. Here, executive chef Steve Ulibarri transforms a Pimm’s cocktail into a liqueur-spiked vanilla cake layered with cucumber, strawberry and mint buttercream, frosted with orange buttercream and garnished with fresh cucumber, strawberry, orange and mint.

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