W W W. C R A F T BY U M H . C O M CAN YOU DIG IT? EARTHLY DELIGHTS CRAFTED WITH SUBTERRANEAN STARCHY STOREHOUSES, THE HUMBLE ROOT VEGETABLE. BY CORI PAIGE I don’t drink sugary sodas as a habit, but I do like to dose sparkling water with tart shrubs to transform them into fizzy H2O that comple- ments my meal. Pok Pok Som has an entire lineup of drinking vinegars and bottled sodas made with their drinking vinegars. I’m partial to savory flavors like their citrusy, pungent Turmeric (bright yellow rhizome in the ginger family), as a shrub or in this convenient RTD pop, Turmer- ic Soda ($8/4-pk). Not in the root vegetable family, but notable are Tamarind and Black Pepper. Kvass is not for everyone, but if you dig funky probiotics like I dig funky probiotics, you’ll appreciate beet kvass’ lacto-fermented tang. Oregon Brineworks Ginger Gold Kvass’ ($19/4- pk) earthy, organic golden beet root base is rounded out with sweet, fresh-squeezed organic carrot juice, and spicy, organic ginger—all sourced from farms near Hood River. Any opportunity I can find (or make) to include Salt & Straw ice cream in an issue, I will. From classic riffs to the straight-up bizarre, Salt & Straw nails it every time. Carrot Cake Batter & Praline Hazelnut ($65/5 pints), part of their Eat Your Vegetable ice cream series, is made with sweet roasted carrots from Gathering Together Farm; molasses; loads of baking spices; sweet, crunchy hazelnut pralines, and velvety swirls of cream cheese frosting. Simply awe- some. Note: I did not share one spoonful from this pint, and I don’t feel guilty about it. Not one bit. Don Ciccio & Figli prepares their take on the Neapolitan classic finocchietto liqueur with California fennel bulbs, Maryland dill, and Italian fennel seeds. The result is a faintly sweet, vegetal digestif that’s delightful served straight up, over ice—with or without tonic or soda—or in cocktails. In the kitchen, add a splash of Finocchietto Fennel Liqueur ($35) to shellfish dishes, I especially like it in my cioppino. Split Rock Distilling is obsessed with sourcing from local growers, but because nobody in the state of Maine is producing enough, the corn used in this ‘from scratch’ spirit comes from nearby Vermont. Two to four thousand pounds of food-grade organic corn (mmmhmmm, some producers use grain well below this standard) is needed to create the base for their vodka. After its run through Split Rock’s hybrid still three times, organic horseradish from Snake Root farm is added to the high-proof 100-per- cent corn vodka to create their Horseradish Vodka ($40). Serve this not-too-hot infusion neat, in bloody Marys and martinis, or in a Red Barn. Several years ago we featured Sidetrack Distilling Bete (beet), and it remains one of my favorites. Bete’s nose is earthy and fresh like roots plucked right out of the garden, on the palate this spirit tastes of warm roasted beets, minus the residual sugar. Bete ($24) is so unique; it’s a spirit I want to share with everyone. © Hundred-to-One LLC 2018. All rights reserved.