From the Garden to the Glass: Freshen Your Drinks with Homegrown Herbs and Spices Part II

cocktail2By Jason Bodley
Photography by David Johnson

 

If you’ve got fresh herbs or chilies in your garden, the perfect summer cocktail is just a few steps away. Here are some of my favorites using basil, sage, chocolate mint and jalapeno peppers.  I’ll be pouring these and many more all summer long at Cerulean in Winona Lake. We’d love for you to spend an evening with us this summer.

Note: Each recipe makes one drink.

cocktail1

 Basil: Blueberry Basil Fizz

This drink is fruity, tart, herbal and ultimately refreshing—just right for the season.

6 blueberries

4 basil leaves

1/2 ounce simple syrup (see below)

1 1/2 ounces gin (I recommend Hayman’s Royal Dock Gin)

1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice

Sprite (or club soda)

1 cucumber slice

Muddle blueberries, basil and syrup. Add gin and lemon juice. Shake. Strain into Collins glass over fresh ice. Top with Sprite or club soda. Garnish with cucumber slice.

 

Chocolate Mint: Mole Mojito

This drink is perfect for parties if you make it by the pitcher. The chocolate mint takes an old standard and makes it interesting again.

10 chocolate mint leaves

2 ounces simple syrup (see recipe this page)

2 ounces white rum (I recommend Prichard’s Crystal Rum)

1/2 ounce fresh lime juice

2 drops Bittermens Mole Bitters

Gently muddle mint leaves and syrup. Add rum and lime juice. Shake. Pour all contents into Collins glass. Top with bitters.

cocktail3

Jason Bodley is the bar program director for Cerulean Restaurant. You can
typically find him behind the bar at Cerulean’s Winona Lake location.

 

Jalapeno: Mezcal Mule

“That sounds interesting. I’ll try it.” This is how people get hooked on this spicy cocktail. It’s hot, but the finish is soothing, which makes you want another sip.

1 jalapeno ring (about a half inch in height, or cut to taste)

1/2 ounce simple syrup (see recipe this page)

2 ounces mezcal (I like Sombra Mezcal)

1/2 ounce fresh lime juice

4–6 ounces Barritt’s Ginger Beer

3 drops Bittermens Hellfire Habanero Shrub

Muddle jalapeno ring and syrup. Add mezcal and lime juice. Shake.  Strain into a Collins glass over fresh ice. Top with ginger beer and Habanero Shrub. Garnish with some thin slices of jalapeno.

 

Sage: Red Plum and Rye

A fresh, clean flavor profile that is subtle enough for summer but complex enough to be an end-of-the-day sipper. This is my kind of last call.

4 slices red plum

4 sage leaves

1/4 ounce simple syrup (see recipe below)

1 1/2 ounces rye whiskey (I recommend Redemption Rye)

1/2 ounce Cointreau

1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice

Gently muddle plum, sage and syrup. Add rye, Cointreau and lemon juice. Shake. Strain into a chilled Martini glass.

 

Simple Syrup

Bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add 2 cups of sugar. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and cool thoroughly before using. Store leftover syrup in the refrigerator.

 

Sources

Bitterman’s products available at Citywide Liquors in Mishawaka and South Bend, IN (CityWideLiquors.com/locations.html).  Barritt’s Ginger Beer available at Citywide and at Bambers Superette in South Bend, IN. We suggest calling ahead to verify that products are in stock.

Cerulean Restaurant

CeruleanRestaurant.com

Winona Lake
1101 East Canal St., Winona Lake, IN
574.269.1226
 
Indianapolis
339 S. Delaware St., Indianapolis, IN
317.870.1320

Jason Bodley is the bar program director for Cerulean Restaurant. You can typically find him behind the bar at Cerulean’s Winona Lake location.

Cocktails not your style?

Check out this home brew tasting event at Cerulean Garden: Kosciusko Kettleheads—a local home brew club—and Cerulean will serve up beer from 20 local brewers in the Garden on June 15 at 6pm. Advanced tickets recommended. For more info:

574.269.1226

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