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Drink DuJour: Marchesa’s Caprese

A drink that’s fit for a queen

The lavish dinner theatre experience known as Queen of the Night has been redefining New York nightlife since its debut in February 2014. Located in the Paramount Hotel’s newly renovated Diamond Horseshoe, Queen of the Night’s vaudevillian sideshows are reminiscent of the club’s Golden Age before it was left abandoned for 62 years. The stunning performances awaken more than the rich history of the Paramount Hotel. Leather-clad butlers, gravity-defying acrobats and elaborately dressed seductresses fill the room. It’s a deliciously alluring atmosphere that serves equally delicious libations.

The Marchesa’s Caprese signature drink is “engineered to shed any inhibitions and preconceptions of the everyday cocktail,” says Jason Kaciupski, Diamond Horseshoe’s mixologist. Kaciupski chose subtle spices in his dynamic cocktail that matched the stimulating performances around them. 

Kaciupski’s muse for the drink is “The Marchesa,” a character in the immersive theatre performance based on the most scandalous and iconic woman of 20th Century Europe. As Kaciupski explains, “The Marchesa was very well traveled and loved to bring back recipes and ingredients to the lavish galas that she would host. It was her way of sharing expensive taste with her selected guests.” Kaciupski was particularly taken with the queen’s travels to Capri, which led him to deem the cocktail the “Marchesa’s Caprese.” The worldliness and exclusivity of the Marchesa’s menu is showcased in Kaciupski’s cocktail, complete with the Italian-inspired ingredients combination of tomato and basil.  As a result, guests at the Diamond Horseshoe get a full sensory experience that’s literally fit for a queen. 



1 Sweet grape tomato
1 Grape tomato
1.5 oz Vodka
0.5 oz Freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ Simple syrup
Ground tumit pepper
2 dashes of spice 

Muddle sweet grape tomato, grape tomato and basil leaves gently in large tumbler. Shake vodka, lemon juice and simple syrup. Pour shaken over muddled tomatoes and large ice. Garnish with ground pepper and dashes of spice.