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Zengo Introduces Three New "Test Kitchen" Cocktails

Zengo Introduces Three New

Raise a glass to the last weeks of summer with one of three cocktails — the Gingered Bourbon, Lychee Bellini, and Strawberry-Lemon Mojito — from the latest in a series of seasonal “Test Kitchens” at Richard Sandoval’s Chinatown establishment, Zengo. A testament to the restaurant’s name (which translates to “give and take” in Japanese), the series showcases food and drink inspired by one Asian and one Latin city, this time Hong Kong and San Juan.

Because Latin and Asian cuisine often use the same ingredients in different ways (for example, frequently used condiments in Latin countries are more likely to be cooked into a dish in Asian countries), dishes that fuse both make a lot of sense. To complement the food, the beverages have strong flavors but aren’t overly boozy. While that means you won’t necessarily have to chose between the three, if you just want one, the Gingered Bourbon is a stand-out: with gingered liqueur, fresh lemon juice, and simple syrup, it’s one cocktail both bourbon lovers and novices will like.

The Lychee Bellini is a mix of lychee puree andsparkling sake, and the Strawberry-Lemon Mojito is refreshing combination of muddled lemon, fresh mint, strawberry purree, agave, rum, and club soda. All the flavors pair well with Sandoval’s sweet and sour barbecue pork ribs (our favorite food item) as well as the crispy fried fish, which when we tried it was a red snapper served whole and dressed with Malanga puree and black bean vinaigrette. Additional plates include foie gras shumai, roast chicken and coconut tapioca pudding with lemon sorbet.

In addition to enjoying the new cocktails at Zengo, we also experienced some of the best service in D.C. — always the best complement to any libation.

Photos by Lauren Sloat

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