Friday, July 6, 2012

Strawberry Sake Cocktail

I've mentioned many times that fruit is the leading lady of summer, and last post I delved into the different ways to prepare it above and beyond the obvious of eating it raw. This week though, I introduce to you an equally enticing preparation: summer fruit in a cocktail. It's always 5 o'clock somewhere (especially in the summer, don't you agree?) and I envision this Strawberry Sake Cocktail being consumed poolside watching the sun go down, or during a Central Park picnic, or maybe an outdoors concert. This breezy refreshment is just one of many featured in Serious Eat's 22 Ways to Use Summer Fruit in Cocktails, and I definitely encourage you to explore the website for some more fun cocktail ideas.

 I chose this recipe for three reasons: 1. Muddling is fun 2. Sake makes a smooth, light alcohol base that goes down a little more gently than your harder spirits like vodka or rum, and 3. Could there be a more refreshing combination than strawberries and mint? Oh and you want to throw in some lime juice and seltzer too? Sold.

According to Serious Eats, muddling "preserves the tart, fresh flavor of fruit by not messing with it too much." If you don't own a muddler, just use the end of a wooden spoon. I muddled with a lemon squeezer.
The strawberry-mint combination in this drink was truly refreshing, but I have a feeling it would taste wonderful with basil too. 

Strawberry Sake Cocktail (from Serious Eats)
Makes 1 cocktail

2 strawberries, sliced plus another for garnish
3/4 ounces fresh juice from 1 to 2 limes
1 ounce simple syrup*
1 sprig of mint, plus another for garnish (optional substitution: basil)
 2 ounces Junmai Ginjo sake
1 1/2 ounces seltzer water 
*To make simple syrup, combine 1 cup water with 1 cup sugar in a small saucepan and heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sugar is dissolved. Cool before using. Simple syrup will keep in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

1. In a mixing glass, muddle strawberry, lime juice, and simple syrup in the bottom of a tall glass until the strawberry is completely dissolved. Add mint leaves and gently tap 5 times with muddler. (Do not over-muddle mint or it will taste bitter and muddy.)
2. Fill the glass with ice and add sake. Stir until the fully incorporated. Pour unstrained into serving glass, top with seltzer and garnish with a sprig of mint and a strawberry.



  1. Mmmm, looks delicious and so good for a hot summer day! :)

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