Simple syrup is a bar staple and an easy way…
The other night I was out to dinner at a great local Mexican restaurant. They specialize in tequila and mezcal drinks, and their menu has been limited to cocktails that were based on those spirits – not a bad thing, in my opinion, for a Mexican restaurant – up until very recently. On my last visit, I noticed that they had expanded the drink menu considerably and included many whiskey cocktails. My server said the bartenders were getting lots of requests for whiskey drinks, so they introduced some new seasonal drinks for the cocktail menu.
This Strawberry Fields cocktail is based on the drink I ended up having alongside my carne asada. It’s made with rye whiskey (I used Templeton Rye), strawberry puree, lemon juice and mint – a very refreshing twist on strawberry lemonade. The drink at the restaurant was made with bourbon, and while I do enjoy a nice bourbon cocktail, the spice of rye makes this drink less sweet and more complex.
2 oz. Rye Whiskey
1 1/2 oz. Strawberry Puree*
1 oz. Lemon Juice
7-8 Mint Leaves
1/2 oz. Simple Syrup
Combine simple syrup, mint leaves and lemon juice in a mixing glass and muddle. Add the rest of the ingredients, fill with ice and shake. Double strain into a glass over ice and garnish with a sprig of mint.
*I make strawberry puree with fresh strawberries, adding 2-3 tablespoons of sugar per 8 ounces of berries, depending on the sweetness of the berries.