Booze News

Eric Tecosky Introduces Kimchi-Infused Vodka to Erbe Matte

Tecosky's kim chi vodka
Tecosky’s kim chi vodka Photo: Tatiana Arbogast

Just a little more than a week into business, so far Erbe Matte doesn’t have a lot we can recommend from its dinner menu. Stopping in last week on the restaurant’s invitation, we found the seafood jeon had no structure, the beef tartar carried ice-cold patches, and we felt a looming identity crisis as to whether the restaurant should go in a Korean or Italian direction, currently heading in both, in a lackluster fashion that brings little flair to either genre. But one thing is clear here, or rather beautifully rose-tinted.

Great Jones bartender Eric Tecosky crafted a wicked little cocktail list for Louis Kim’s new restaurant, with Korean ginseng and green tea mixed into a house made limoncello, a bourbon libation with Asian pear and lavender bitters named for agent Ronnie Chasen, and even a tongue-in-cheek Korean boilermaker (a shot of soju with a can of Hite). Most alluring is a drink named “Beverly Farms,” in which Tecosky employs his recipe of kimchi-infused Eristoff vodka in a mixture of spices and tomato juice, along with his own Dirty Sue-branded dirty martini olive juice.

Taken on its own, the kimchi-infused spirit is a gorgeous shade of dark rose and soundly embodies the slightly salty, slightly sour, earthy funk of kimchi while showcasing the spirit at its core. It’s a step closer to that pickle juice vodka we’ve always dreamed of concocting, with the pickled profile prominent, but very far from retch-inducing. A clear and clever nod to Korean culture and cuisine, so far it is the most outstanding and defined testament to what a Korean-influenced European restaurant could eventually become. We’ll give Erbe Matte some time to work out its kinks, but in the meantime, we can back Tecosky’s contributions to the menu.

Eric Tecosky Introduces Kimchi-Infused Vodka to Erbe Matte