A perfectly blended Manhattan is amazing.
But sometimes you need to break out of your routine and get a little weird to keep things interesting. And what better place to do that than in Austin, where it’s literally the city’s motto.
Here are three drinks you can order right now to shake up your routine a bit, make you think of cocktails in a different way and get some inspiration for your homemade inventions.
Clarified milk punch is a classic cocktail format, but one that you would not normally expect to see with ingredients that otherwise sound like a strawberry margarita.
The clarification process usually involves adding warm milk to something sour, such as citrus, and then letting it set and then straining to remove the curd. The technique preserves the drink, but also evens out harsh tastes.
Originally, the tequila drink was served over crushed ice, and it was left in the dish to be effective at the high-volume bar. But the heavy particles from lemon juice and strawberry puree kept clogging the lines, general manager Tyler Naumann said. They refined the cocktail, which gets a bit of complexity from Aperol, by using a chinois and coffee filter and started serving it on a large ice cube instead of crushed ice.
“The milk clarification adds a nice flavorful touch to the drink and is a bit more refined due to the change in serving style,” Naumann said.
Sarukani Gassen, Watertrade at Otoko
I like cocktails that have umami and mix salt and sweet, and I also like uni (sea urchin) which has a salty salty mouthfeel sweetness, but I never thought about putting uni in a cocktail before I visited Watertrade , a Japanese-style bar with an extensive Japanese whiskey list associated with Otoko, a 12-seater restaurant.
For the current menu, all cocktails are based on Japanese folklore, said bartender Nadia Hernandez. Sarukani Gassen, or “The Crab and the Monkey”, uses ingredients found in a tale of a monkey killing a crab and then being killed by the crab’s offspring. She named the walnut liqueur for the chestnut in the story and also uses a licensed liqueur to compliment the uni. A chef at the restaurant suggested Hernandez incorporate shiso, which is sometimes served with uni in Japan.
Hernandez adds uni in curaçao and the persimmon liqueur to form the base of the cocktail and adds some shiso syrup. There is lime to counteract the sweetness, and as the main spirit, Hernandez Banks chose the 5 Island Dry Rum as the cocktail was shaping up to become a sort of daiquiri riff. Walnut liqueur then adds a bit of depth. It is garnished with a fresh shiso leaf and then sprinkled with dehydrated uni powder for another hit of hydrogen intensity.
Pearl Diver Punch, Tiki Tatsu-Ya
This long awaited bar from the Tatsu-Ya restaurant group is a difficult reservation to get. It’s worth the hype. The Japanese-influenced tiki bar is an immersive experience, where diners and drinkers either sit in a “cave” overlooking a two-story Shisa Dragon cliff fountain or upstairs in a beach hut, with an accent of theatrical lighting design and music stepping in. high gear if someone orders a show-stopping group cocktail.
Pearl Diver Punch is a tribute to Donn Beach’s recipe from 1937, but with flavors from the Silk Road, said Tristan Pearman, director of branding and development for Tatsu-Ya. Tiki Tatsu-Ya mixes Caribbean rum with a house Gardenia Mix with Indian spices, along with mandarin and lime. The end result is an ice-cold, greased room.
But the best part is that it is served with cloves sprayed with cardamom bitters that smell so delicious and complement the other flavors of the drink so well that I drank it with my nose buried in them all the time. Like a weirdo.