It’s a Cherry not a Berry

On my nights off, I seldom feel like making myself a cocktail. Lately I’ve resorted to drinking craft beer or straight spirits.

Today was different. I had a surplus of cherries in the fridge that weren’t very sweet and were getting quite lonely. I put them to good use and ended up with this:

Bing Cherry Syrup (375 ml)

200 g  Cherries (seeds and all)

200 g Water

200 g Sugar (raw cane)

Combine cherries and water in a saucepan at low heat. Before it boils, turn heat down and crush cherries. Add sugar and bring to a light boil over medium heat. Turn heat down to a simmer and continue cooking for 5 minutes. Take off heat and pass through a fine strainer. Cool and bottle. Don’t forget to press out as much liquid out of the solid bits in the strainer.

(If I were to make this again I would probably up the cherry amount, but hey, I was working with what I had.)

Not being one to pass up an opportunity to make a drink  with a new ingredient, I decided to use the last lemon in the house to make this sour:

It’s a Cherry not a Berry

2 oz. Cardenal Mendoza Spanish Brandy

.5 oz Grand Marnier

1 oz Bing Cherry Syrup

1 oz Lemon Juice

1 Egg White

Garnish – A blackberry, lemon peel, orange peel & Angostura bitters

It’s might seem unintuitive to start with the making the garnish, however if it’s a bit on the complicated side I highly recommend it. The garnish will stay fresh for far longer than a cocktail, especially one with egg whites.

I started off by preparing my garnish ingredients, a lonely blackberry (I ran out of cherries), a lemon peel and an orange peel. I trimmed and neatly squared off the citrus peels.

I then slit a vertical line on the peels left sides and a diagonal slit from the bottom right hand corner of each as shown.

After curling the vertical corners, aligning the peels, clipping them & inserting the berry to the opposite end of a mini clothes pin (I admit I went a little overboard), I ended up with this!

 It was now time to assemble the drink, dry shake, and shake with ice.

After a nice strong shake, I strained the cocktail into a coupé,

decorated with Angostura hearts and balance the pre-prepared garnish!

Overall the Brandy, cherry and orange peel notes from the Grand Marnier, created a beautiful balance of flavors. The drink was surprisingly dry yet tart and worked great with the velvety mouthfeel from the egg white. The Angostura hearts added a little touch of baking spice for that perfect finish.



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