Guests walked the orange carpet to enter Cointreau’s Summer Bar Cart Series poolside soiree last night at Ku De Ta, the member-only swimming pool and bar behind Three Sheets. Dita Von Teese, Queen of Burlesque and global brand ambassador for Cointreau, brought her ‘40s and ‘50s glam to everything from the retro-style swimsuits worn by the synchronized swimming entertainment, the Aqualillies, to the bar cart design.
Jump for beautiful photography by Desiree Espada.
With his bow tie, waistcoat, and Tom Sellek ‘stache, Kyle Ford, Mixologist for Cointreau, seemed to have been transported straight from Prohibition days into the soiree. However, he is anything but out of touch. He made me his favorite of the evening’s offerings, the Luxe Margarita (Cointreau, blanco tequila, fresh lime juice, champagne & Peychaud’s Bitters) while explaining the latest cocktail trends. According to him, carbonated drinks are all the rage in New York City, where he works, and will be the prevailing trend of the summer. It made perfect sense when I sipped his creation. The zing from the fizzy champagne made the bright, floral Luxe Margarita even more refreshing in the muggy heat. Ford must have his finger on the cocktail pulse because the Luxe Margarita was the crowd favorite.
Cointreau was celebrating the beginning of summer and the invention of the original margarita by Dallas socialite Margarita Sames at her Acapulco home in 1948. I won’t be raising my glass to the Dallas summer heat, but I’m very comfortable getting behind this variety of tequila-lime concoction. In addition to the Original Margarita (Cointreau, blanco tequila, and fresh lime juice), Ku De Ta bartenders were serving up the Luxe Margarita, Palomita (Cointreau, grapefruit juice & fresh lime juice), Cointreaupolitan (Cointreau, Cranberry and fresh lime juice), and Lime & Soda (Cointreau, fresh lime juice, club soda).
Given her classic style and vintage obsession, it’s no surprise that Dita von Teese’s drink of choice is the classic margarita. As a designer of lingerie, she imagines a lingerie piece with ‘a nice, light summertime feeling and a bit of 40s Latin flair’ would match the drink perfectly. However, she plans to be a bit a spicier at her 40th birthday party this September, where she’ll serve Margaditas, a margarita infused with Monin Rose syrup and chipotle powder.
Ford described both the Cointreau brand and Dita as ‘sophisticated with a bit mischief.’ Now that’s a trend that could outlast the summer.
Lesley Mann Lynch is a D Magazine summer intern. She went to the University of Cambridge on a full ride and got her masters in Bioscience Enterprise. She’s now at El Centro getting her certificate in basic culinary skills.