Staff Spotlight – Mike Rosario

Michael ‘Mike’ Rosario – Head Bartender, Gigi Trattoria

Born and raised in Brooklyn, Michael moved to New York’s Hudson Valley in 2011. He began his career as a food professional more than 20 years ago and has since held just about every ‘front of house’ position. Michael worked with noted restaurateurs like Drew Nieporent and Charles Palmer, proudly assisting with the opening of Palmer’s American bistro Alva’s. His transition to Upstate New York was driven by the farm-to-table movement he saw going on in the City and strong desire to get closer to it.

Mike RosarioMichael’s migration from Brooklyn to the area first took him to a 7-acre property in Saugerties, NY where he enjoyed his first foray in gardening beyond the patio. More recently, Michael transitioned to a 22-acre property where he hopes to continue fruit and vegetable cultivation but also hopes to raise poultry and perhaps even try his hand at beekeeping. When asked if he misses the metro New York restaurant and food scene, he emphatically says “No way! What’s going on up here is so real and so close to the farms. I had been hearing about Gigi Trattoria and what they’re all about since 2003. I knew I wanted to work for this company because they really live it – I see the farmers and producers come in and out of the doors all day long.”

After a year of leading the Gigi Trattoria service team, Michael recently stepped into the role of head bartender. Not only does he continue a tradition of innovative seasonal cocktails that use the purees and infusions from local harvest as well as locally distilled spirits, but he also oversees the ever-vital ‘perch’ from the bar greeting incoming guests and assisting and mentoring our treasured service team. Whether dining at ‘the counter’ is your preferred experience or simply enjoying a drink (with or without alcohol) made with great care, come in and enjoy Mike’s full service approach. We look forward to sharing his imprints and style in the selections of our Mediterranean-inspired wine list and hand-crafted cocktails throughout the seasons.

A Cocktail for the Season… Gigi Trattoria’s Autumnal Moon

Autumnal MoonExcited by the flavors of fall, Gigi Trattoria Bartender Extrodinaire Lisa Butenhoff put together the Autumnal Moon. She first prepares a ginger-Crown Maple simple syrup that has a sweet and spice harmony. Dutch Spirits Sugar Wash Moonshine provides that ‘kick’ that balances all.

2 oz Dutch’s Spirits Sugar Wash Moonshine
1 oz House made Crown Maple Ginger Syrup*
1 tablespoon rum soaked cranberries

*To prepare Crown Maple Ginger Syrup, combine equal parts of brown sugar (1/2 cup), water (1/2 cup) and Crown Maple Syrup (1/4 cup) with 2 ounces of sliced ginger root. Bring to a low boil, then turn off heat and let steep for 1 hour. Strain and cool. Makes about 1 cup (16 oz).

Combine cranberries and syrup in a shaker and muddle. Add the ice and Dutch Spirits Sugar Wash Moonshine. Shake vigorously. Layer bottom of rocks glass with cranberries topped with ice and strain. Enjoy immediately.

Gigi’s Autumnal Moon was recently highlighted in the Dutch Spirits newsletter! Read about it, here!