I’m lucky enough to live in a city that has great bars exploring craft cocktails. Don’t get me wrong, I love a nice vodka martini, but being introduced to other not so well known drinks is wonderful. One of my favorite places in Seattle, Liberty, is known for their extensive list of craft cocktails. They frequently have this drink as a barrel aged drink, meaning they make it and then let it set in a bourdon barrel for a couple of weeks. I liked it so much that I make it at home, not barrel aged though. I have modified it just a bit, adding a dash of orange bitters. Enjoy!
- 1 1/2 oz Rye Whiskey
- 1 1/2 oz Brandy
- 1 1/2 oz Sweet Vermouth
- 1/2 oz Benedictine
- 3 dashes Peychaud bitters
- 3 dashes Angostura bitters
Add all the ingredients into a glass or cocktail shaker. Stir for about 45 seconds. Serve in a rocks glass, best with 1 large ice-cube.
One of my favorite pizza places in Seattle, Stellar Pizza, has a blackberry Habanero margarita on their drink menu. I love it! A slow burn with the sweet flavor of blackberry and the tart lime, delicious! But I got tired of having to go there all the time just to have one (or two or even three), so I decided to make my own version. I think it’s pretty close, I skip their step of muddling the lime and just use fresh lime juice. Enjoy!
Blackberry-Habanero Simple Syrup
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 cups blackberries
- 2 or more Habanero pepper, chopped*
In a medium pan combine all of the ingredients, use a masher to crush the blackberries. Bring to a simmer and cook for an hour. Strain out the blackberries and put the juice back in to a pan and continue to simmer until reduced and slightly thick, about another 30 minutes. Cool.
*OK the spice level here is very iffy. You never know how hot or not the peppers are going to be. So I usually buy 3 or 4 and as it’s simmering, a good 30 to 45 minutes in, I’ll taste it to see how hot it is. If it hasn’t got that hot bite to it I’ll add another pepper and add 20 minutes to the simmering time. If it’s still not hot enough, and this has only happened to me once, I’ll add the 4th pepper and again add another 20 minutes. BE VERY CAREFUL CHOPPING THESE, YOU SHOULD USE RUBBER GLOVES!
Blackberry Habanero Margarita
- 4 oz of good tequila, I use a silver or blanco
- 3 oz of fresh lime juice, fresh really makes a difference
- 2 oz of blackberry-habanero simple syrup
- 1 oz triple sec
In a cocktail shaker full of ice add all of the ingredients and shake. Pour into a pint glass, salted rim or not, and add a lime wedge (optional).