Slideshow: First Look: Cocktails at Levant in Portland, OR

The Only Way Down ($8)
The Only Way Down ($8)
"I wanted to make a cocktail that would please the vodka-soda crowd while inviting exploration into some exotic spirits," says Reissmueller. "Apricot and tarragon are a natural Southern French flavor combination." The cocktail brings together Sub Rosa tarragon vodka, Rothman and Winter Orchard Apricot, fresh lemon, and seltzer—garnished with a fresh rosemary sprig.
Gin Rummy ($9)
Gin Rummy ($9)
"I like the idea of gin and rum together," says Reissmueller. She infuses Plymouth gin with dried hibiscus, then mixes it with Appleton VX rum infused with peppercorn, clove, cardamom, and cinnamon. "Hibiscus is a great flavor to pair with the botanicals in the gin, and the warm spices in the rum give this cocktail a lot of warmth and body." The addition of housemade pineapple vinegar, she says, "provides a bright zing to punch up the botanicals."
Mini-Cocktails ($5)
Mini-Cocktails ($5)
Reissmueller hopes the mini-cocktails will invite sampling throughout the meal. The first options on the menu are Chamomile-Whiskey, made with Four Roses Bourbon and infused with chamomile flowers, and Black Lime-Rum, the housemade spiced Appleton's VX infused with sun-dried whole limes (the lime flavor is reminiscent of Sweet-tarts.)
Pillow Talk ($9)
Pillow Talk ($9)
This dessert cocktail was created for those who want something lighter (and a little more interesting) than a White Russian (no offense, Dude). The drink is a rich blend of Hennessy cognac, saffron honey cream, turmeric, pepper, cardamom, and ginger.
Alex Blair and Alex Manning
Alex Blair and Alex Manning
Lead bartenders Blair and Manning will be expanding the cocktail menu seasonally.