final salud

rocko’s modern spice
concocted by Dion Griego
inspired by 90s cartoons

photography // brittni bell warshaw
videography // kristopher lewis photography

“Dion brings his warmth and welcoming presence to an otherwise dim, casual atmosphere. His season-forward cocktail menu reeled us into cozier times with odes to our past, such as TV personas like Fresh Prince of Bel-Air or the inspiration for this cocktail, 90’s cartoon Rocko’s Modern Life. Despite the casual, whimsical names, the execution and the tailored taste is nothing short of high-quality. Dion’s drink is a mix of flavors curated for the curious and adventurous and is meant to be enjoyed with quality friends looking to carpe diem.”

jack urbano, broker – milehimodern

Your name:

Andrew Dion Griego, but I go by my middle name Dion.

How long have you been in the industry?

I have been tending bar for 5 years.

Where/how did you learn your craft?

I first started working with craft cocktails at The Kitchen Denver, under my bar manager Dustin Lawlor. When I was put behind the bar, I was only working the lunch shifts, which involved more prep and less cocktail making compared to at night. Working with a very awesome, passionate crew of bartenders, I was able to soak up as much information, style and techniques, as well as study and read cocktail books on my own time. My passion for making quality cocktails grew and is still growing.

Explain the cocktail name.

This cocktail is called Rocko’s Modern Spice. It’s a play on the show Rocko’s Modern Life, and since there is Fresno pepper-infused tequila, I added the pun of spice.

This cocktails muse is … 

I liked the idea of doing unique takes on egg white sours. So, I went in and infused the tequila, and through trial and error, I found the perfect balance.

Describe the tasting notes in your own words.

I’d say this has a bit of a spicy kick that’s not overwhelming, the fruitiness from the pisco and sloe gin balance out the spice from the tequila.

Can you explain the meaning of one or all of your pins on your apron?

Most of the pins on my apron are from different spirit brands that I enjoy. My favorite pin is a small bottle of Hendricks Gin pouring into a collins representing a gin and tonic. It’s just a fun pin and I love Hendricks.

What’s your favorite spirit and a classic cocktail?

Oh, I have so many spirits that I love but I particularly like rum and brandy. My favorite rum is Plantation 5 Years, it’s a rum from Barbados that’s been aged in bourbon barrels; it’s delicious and tastes like caramel butterscotch. My hands-down favorite brandy is Calvados, which is distilled from apples from Normandy. It’s dry and fruity. Mmmmm, my favorite!

As far as a classic cocktail, my go-to is the Daiquiri. Not like a frozen one you see out of a machine, just a classic daiquiri is refreshing and delicious. A classic Daq is just rum lime juice and sugar. It’s all you need!

Please share this recipe/or a version of the recipe for the at-home bartender

  • 1 fresno-infused tequila

  • .5 control c chilean pisco

  • .5 plymouth sloe gin

  • .75 freshly squeezed lime juice

  • .5 simple syrup (2:1 sugar to water)

  • 1 egg white

You will want to build the cocktail in a shake in order to get the egg white out and not the yolk. You want to first shake the cocktail with ice (super hard and rigorous) to mix all of the ingredients and dilute the cocktail. Then you want to fine strain the cocktail back into the shaker and then shake hard again without ice to build up the froth from the egg white. Next, fine strain into a coupe. I like to use a few drops of Angostura bitters for the garish where I can do a fun design. Finally, salud! Your cocktail is ready to enjoy.