1Muddle lavender and vanilla with pears, add vodka and Cointreau, and shake with ice. Strain into a caramelized-sugar-rimmed martini glass.
2To garnish the rim, heat natural cane sugar in a small saucepan (do not use a nonstick pan) over low heat. Add a split vanilla bean if you like. When the sugar has browned, let it cool slightly and dip the martini glass in the pan to coat the rim. Note: If the glass is chilled before coating, it may break.
The first step to wine appreciation is opening the bottle. Jeff Creamer, former wine director at the now-defunct San Francisco restaurant Two, coaxes a cork from a bottle in a few easily replicable steps.