We are seasonal cocktail drinkers. As the weather warms up here in New Orleans, I'm much more inclined to go for an interesting icy cold beverage before dinner. We are fortunate to live in a city where cocktails are an art and bartenders are sought after for their creative talents with a muddler, fresh local ingredients, herbs and interesting spirits.
Take for instance our latest trip to a Mano. As well as a great wine list they've got a really cool lineup of cocktails with a focus on Italian spirits. I ordered the Chinotto, a delicious combination of Junipero Gin, Averna Amaro, Local Bitter Orange Juice and Brown Sugar. A wonderful way to start the evening and I loved the unique flavor combination.
So on Sunday evenings in the summer we like to have a cocktail as we cook dinner and although it was not very warm last night we decided we would celebrate the first weekend of spring with one of our favorites, a Caipirinha. But Kerry got the brilliant idea to top it of with a little Del Maguey Crema de Mezcal, a combination of 10% roasted agave syrup and 90% mezcal made in the original, natural, handcrafted way. It is slightly sweet, with this incredible smoky, stewed fruit flavor that was absolutely incredible with the tart, limey Caipirinha. Very dangerous stuff here...you've been warned.
Kerry's Smokin' Caipirinha
* 1 lime, quartered
* 2 tsp fine sugar
* 2 oz cachaca
* splash of crema de mezcal
1. Place the lime wedges and sugar into a rocks glass.
2. Muddle well to create a paste.
3. Fill the glass with ice cubes.
4. Pour in the cachaca.
5. Stir well.
6. Top off with a splash of crema de mezcal.