Posts Tagged kendal duque

Recipe: Miss GG’s East Egg Cocktail

Courtesy of  Kendal Duque and Sepia: “This cocktail is one of the most simple on the menu, but it is my favorite. I really like how it came out and how all four components shine through in a refreshing balance. For me, this is a quintessential late summer cocktail.”

Miss GG's East Egg Cocktail

Miss GG's East Egg Cocktail


  • 1 oz / 30ml Lemon Juice
  • 1 oz / 30ml Chamomile Tea [Recipe Follows]
  • 1.5 oz / 45ml Thyme infused Honey Syrup [Recipe Follows]
  • 1.5 oz / 45ml Gin (preferrably a drier, juniper forward classic style gin)


  • Stir, to bring up the honey and to integrate the tea
  • Add a splash of soda water
  • Garnish with a lemon wedge and sprigs of fresh thyme
For the Honey Thyme Syrup:
  • In a sauce pan, add 1 cup honey to one cup water along with a handful of fresh thyme.
  • Simmer for 10 minutes, remove from heat and let steep for another 60 minutes before straining out thyme.
  • Let cool before using.
For the Chamomile Tea:
  • Make a concentrated tea (using about twice as much as you normally would if just making tea to drink)
  • Let it steep for 15 minutes to build up a strong flavor as well as some tannins.
  • I brew the tea fresh every day before the start of the night and let it cool before using.

The cocktail can also be batched out to be made by the pitcher and just poured over ice (1 cup lemon juice, 1 cup tea, 1.5 cups thyme honey syrup, 1.5 cup gin, 1 cup soda water)

Why this name?

I get asked all the time about this because of the name.  It was suggested to me by my girlfriend to make a cocktail called the “Great Gatsby” - I liked the idea but did not want to call it Gatsby. So I started thinking about the location of the novel, the old money sea-side village of East Egg, driving around through seaside roads in a convertible, white suits, sun hats, elaborate parties, etc. So I said if they were drinking something during the day it would be chamomile tea if at night it would naturally be a gin cocktail. So I combined those two, then the natural complimentary items for chamomile are lemon and honey. But I wanted to add a bit of summer to it, an herb, so I decided on thyme. The soda just helps to open everything up a bit. I love the cocktail because it is both clean and refreshing but has a complexity to it, it also has a sweet element but finishes dry with a good amount of acidity.

But for the Miss G.G part… Gallit Greenspoon – my girlfriend and the one that got me thinking about this cocktail.

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Chef Bios: Kendal Duque

Kendal Duque

Kendal Duque

Kendal Duque grew up in a family of cooks. His maternal great-grandmother, known as one of the great cooks in Quito, Ecuador, was an inspiration to him as a child and a passion for cooking passed down the family lines to Kendal.

His family immigrated to the United States when he was young, and while studying at UC Berkeley, Kendal would often walk by the iconic Chez Panisse just to check out the menu. He quickly came to the realization that this was more than a passing curiosity and upon completing his thesis in Literature, he enrolled in culinary school. After graduating from Peter Kump’s New York Cooking School (1996), he began working under the legendary Julian Serrano, first at Masa (San Francisco) and then at the Bellagio (Las Vegas). After two years with Serrano, Kendal moved to Chicago and continued his working education, working in the kitchens of Jean Joho’s four-star Everest and then as sous chef on the opening team of the highly-anticipated Tru.

Inspired by all he had learned, Kendal went to Paris to stage at several Michelin-starred restaurants, soaking up all he could of the intense atmosphere. From Europe, he spent time working in NYC at the acclaimed Union Pacific, and he then returned to Chicago to work as the sous chef at NoMi. It was at NoMi Kendal met Emmanuel Nony, and a few years later, the two began collaborating on Sepia, one of the featured restaurants in the iPhone application 42 Restaurants.

Kendal decided to move on from Sepia in March 2009, to start his own restaurant. He was succeeded by Andrew Zimmerman, formerly chef de cuisine at NoMI and one-time chef at Mod and Del Toro restaurants in Wicker Park.

In 2009, Kendal had been a semifinalist for the James Beard Foundation’s Best Chef: Great Lakes award. With a degree in Latin American literature from the University of California, Berkeley, creativity is a defining characteristic of Kendal’s – it is the creative process he loves most about cooking and his style can be described as of the moment, good-spirited and filled with clean, pure, direct flavors. Simple, yet elegant.

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