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Infused by Local Ingredients, Craft Cocktails Raise the Bar

When it comes to libations, North Sounders’ preference for beer—namely, ales—is well-chronicled. While brew pubs proliferate, the craft cocktail is juicing up happy hours and nighttime social sessions. This is not your grandfather’s scotch and soda. Local ingredients, blends, and liqueurs are in fashion, as are the distilleries, and even the bartenders, that make them. We take a look at what’s new when it comes to drinks in Whatcom, Skagit, and San Juan counties, and the creative and committed people involved who are infusing the industry with color and charisma. Let’s all toast to that.

Alexine Langdon

Hundred North

Behind Hundred North’s stylish atmosphere is an artist hard at work, perfecting her craft and charming customers with brilliant beverages that deliver one-of-a-kind tastes. Bar manager Alexine Langdon has earned a reputation of constructing fun and beautiful drinkable creations, using the cocktail as the canvas to her art.

Although Langdon has been behind the bar at Hundred North for only two years, she has assumed the role as confidently as a veteran of the trade. She frequently arrives at the restaurant hours before opening to play with flavors, liqueurs, herbs, and more. To customers’ delight, she aims to produce a new drink every week.

Langdon’s arsenal is extensive and mostly home-grown. The large array features spirits from local distilleries like Bellewood Acres. The only ingredients that are not local are any citrus flavors, which are difficult to find in Washington state.

“Transitioning to local spirits is a new vision of mine,” Langdon says. “Now that I’ve been a bar manager for a year now, I really want to put my stamp on this bar and how it relates to what the kitchen is putting out, too.”

While she tries to come out with a new drink weekly, some creations may take months of planning, taste-testing, and tinkering. Her favorite? The Dutch Blossom. With a jenever base, the drink is tangy, fruity, and a spinoff of Langdon’s favorite summer drink, a gimlet.

With her inventive style and eye for innovation, Langdon is making the bar at Hundred North a place to be.

“Being creative has been a constant in my life,” Langdon says. “It was a fun transition to go from serving to bartending because it’s a creative, constructive outlet in an industry that I already knew and loved.”

Langdon’s Favorite Recipe

The Dutch Blossom

Jenever, Fresh squeezed lime juice, Apricot liqueur, Dry sherry, Spritz of Cardamom bitters

100 N. Commercial St., Bellingham
360.594.6000 | hundrednorth.com

To continue reading our feature on Spirits, click here!

"'Now that I’ve been a bar manager for a year now, I really want to put my stamp on this bar and how it relates to what the kitchen is putting out, too.'"