I love Spring. Something about drinking outside when it's warm just makes it worth rolling out of bed in the morning. Few things are more satisfying that a well balanced, refreshing cocktail. We wanted our Spring cocktail lineup to reflect the fresh produce available now and some ingredients that we love for the Spring that you may not be familiar with. We're adding Six new cocktails to the menu and bringing back a favorite.
1. Strawberry Basil Smash
A smash is, loosely defined, any cocktail made with a spirit, sweetener, and an herb. So if you have been to the bar Julep in Houston (and you should), this is probably familiar to you. We muddle fresh strawberry and basil together with some simple syrup and shake it with Ford's Gin (You REALLY want the Gin. Resist the urge to substitute Vodka), Lime Juice, and some Cocchi Americano Rosa.
2. Blackberry Caipirinha
A near constant in Brazil, the Capirinha is just starting to catch on here in the States. Made with Cachaca (Ca-Sha-Sa) instead of Rum, the Brazilian counterpart to the Daiquiri tends to be a little less sweet and a little more tart. We basically take a standard caipirinha and add some of our house made Backberry Syrup for a nice bright boost.
3. Aperol Spritz
Aperol is a slightly bitter, slightly sweet, but enormously delicious beverage. It's an Italian Amaro made with bitter orange, gentian, rhubarb, and a bunch of other things. We add some crisp prosecco, a twist of lemon, and boom, you have your new favorite drink. Incidentally this is also fantastic with the Cocchi Rosa I mentioned above instead of Aperol. You should probably try both just to make sure.
One of America's oldest cocktails, the sazerac is a specialty of New Orleans. We make ours with Rittenhouse Rye Whiskey, sugar, water, peychaud and aromatic bitters, and a lemon twist served chilled in a glass with an herbsaint rinse.
Sangria is a little bit like crawfish or piecrust in that everyone who makes it is totally convinced that they make the best in the known universe. Ours is, incidentally, the best in the known universe. We keep it simple, though we won't tell you everything in it for two reasons: 1) Sangria is basically the wine world's trashcan punch . Experiment and use whatever you have lying around. Odd's are it will be delicious. 2) Because I don't want to get yelled at by people who take Sangria way, way too seriously. I'm looking at you Steve. We use a Tempranillo, add things to it, and serve with ice and enough fruit garnishes to justify calling it a fruit salad on your fitness app.
6. The Tidy Harry
My friend Harry made this drink. The ingredients aren't... things I would have chosen to put together, but dammit is it delicious. Huckleberry Vodka, Campari, Cranberry Juice, Sprite. Don't think to hard about what's in this drink. Just order it when it's hot outside. Thanks me later. I'll be the one in the corner trying to figure out how all these things ended up in the same glass in the first place.
7. Pimm's Cup
Making it's second appearance on our menu, this is just one of those drinks you have to drink when it's warm, which luckily for us, is 10 months out of the year. Pimm's No. 1 is a Gin based... Liquer(?) with fruit juices, herbs, and spices. The British put it in sparkling lemonade; we do our a little differently. We fortify it with some more Gin (just a touch) and shake it with lemon juice, simple syrup, cucumbers, and top it with soda. It's also great with ginger beer, but that's another drink.