Black Night

If ever there were proof that you can have fun with your cocktails and still make them themed, this one is it! 

Made with Virgil Kaine Ginger-Infused Bourbon, we've darkened things up with muddled fresh blackberries, a little black currant liqueur and a touch of sweet vermouth. The spice of the ginger pairs perfectly with the fruit flavors - and it's all rounded out with the addition of sweet vermouth. Seriously, if you don't believe us, try it without the vermouth and you'll see what a difference one ingredient can make!

But the real key to this cocktail is double-straining. Nobody wants a bunch of damn seeds in their cocktails, so do it right and strain this cocktail. 

equipment:

cocktail shaker
muddler
strainer
fine mesh strainer
cocktail or coupe glass

ingredients:

5 fresh blackberries (plus more for garnish)
2 oz Virgil Kaine Ginger Infused Bourbon
.5 oz Creme de Cassis liqueur (or dark blackberry liqueur)
.5 oz sweet vermouth

method:

Muddle blackberries in your cocktail shaker before adding remaining ingredients and filling with ice. Shake vigorously and double-strain into a chilled glass. Garnish with a couple blackberries and serve.

Blackberry on High

There are hundreds of tequilas on the market, but only a few deserve to be featured at 3st of the Month. One of those is Avión Tequila. Why? There's a few reasons we think it's so good, so let us tell you...

Avión is made with estate-grown agave from the town of Jesus Maria in Jalisco, Mexico. It's located at the highest point in the Los Altos region of Jalisco, Mexico. Jesus Maria is the most desirable region for tequila production due to the climate, rich soil and high elevation. Then they take the heart of these agave plants and slowly roast them in brick ovens for THREE DAYS! Some tequilas use a steam autoclave process to cook and others may only cook for up to two days. This process results in bringing out the natural sweetness of the agave. After that they distill in small batches using traditional pot stills. And finally, they use a special slow filtration process that removes that infamous 'tequila burn.' Try it at our next 3st of the Month for yourself and tell us what you think!

 

equipment:

cocktail shaker
muddler
strainer
fine mesh strainer
high ball glass

ingredients:

3 oz Avión Silver Tequila
2-4 fresh blackberries, depending on size
.75 oz Collins Blackberry Liqueur
.75 oz fresh-squeezed lime juice
.25 oz agave nectar
blackberries for garnish


method:

Start by placing the blackberries in the bottom of the cocktail shaker and muddling them to release the juices. Add the tequila, blackberry liqueur, lime juice and agave nectar before filling with ice. Cover the shaker and shake like hell for about 15-20 seconds. Fill your glass with ice and strain through a fine mesh strainer to remove all the seeds. Garnish with fresh blackberries.

Nuts & Berries

We've talked about Cathead Vodka's Pecan Vodka before - it is one of our favorite southern flavors artfully crafted into a damn tasty vodka. When working on the Blackberry Cobbler cocktail, it was the addition of the black walnut bitters that made us ponder swapping out the whiskey with Pecan Vodka. 

Boy, were were thrilled with the result. The black walnut bitters did some serious magic with the pecan flavors in the vodka, and this thing tasted like something grandma would have baked on a Sunday afternoon. 

 

equipment:

cocktail shaker
muddler
rocks glass

ingredients:

2 oz Cathead Pecan Vodka
.25 oz Eli Mason Gomme Syrup
.5 oz sweet vermouth
2 dashes black walnut bitters
6 fresh blackberries
strip of orange zest for garnish

 

method:

Start by muddling the blackberries in the cocktail shaker. Add vodka, gomme syrup, sweet vermouth and bitters. Place 4-5 ice cubes in shaker and shake for 30 seconds before transferring entire contents to a chilled rocks glass. Express oil from orange peel over cocktail and drop in the glass for garnish.

Blackberry Cobbler

Back in the late 1880's, the Cobbler was the most popular drink in America. The original was typically made with a base of brandy and enhanced with fresh fruit and sugar. These days, cobbler has a looser definition (as many things do over time), but this version with whiskey, sweet vermouth and blackberries is a notable departure. 

We used a new whiskey we've discovered, Tincup Whiskey from Colorado and it was fantastic! Though it is indeed called a whiskey, it kinda drinks more like a bourbon. That, coupled with some black walnut bitters and Eli Mason gomme syrup made this cocktail pretty damn delicious and slide down nice and easy!

 

equipment:

cocktail shaker
muddler
rocks glass

ingredients:

2 oz Tincup Whiskey
.25 oz Eli Mason Gomme Syrup
.5 oz sweet vermouth
2 dashes black walnut bitters
6 fresh blackberries
strip of orange zest for garnish

 

method:

Start by muddling the blackberries in the cocktail shaker. Add whiskey, gomme syrup, sweet vermouth and bitters. Place 4-5 ice cubes in shaker and shake for 30 seconds before transferring entire contents to a chilled rocks glass. Express oil from orange peel over cocktail and drop in the glass for garnish.

Blackberry Pickin' Moonshine Cocktail

Summers in the south mean more than cutoff jeans and farmer's tans. To us the mean wild berry pickin' and moonshine. At least for the case of this cocktail they do! 

Many folks don't know, but berries are actually closely related to roses. Alisa Huntsman, the pastry chef at the Loveless Cafe taught us that a little rose water in her berry pies brings out the fruity floral notes of fresh berries. Since we've been experimenting with flower waters and had some fresh blackberries on hand, this seemed like the perfect occasion to bring these ingredients together - over some smooth American Born Moonshine nonetheless. Follow the steps below and you'll have a drink so good that you'll never guess that stuff packs a walloppin' 103 proof! 

While this may not be the most simple cocktail we've ever created, it has a few simple steps that are key to making it as damn tasty as it is. Don't just muddle the berries - strain out the seeds and pulp. 

 

equipment:

cocktail shaker
muddler
fine mesh strainer
collins glass or tumbler 

ingredients:

9 fresh blackberries, divided
4-5 fresh mint leaves
2 oz American Born Moonshine
.5 oz Domaine De Canton Ginger Liqueur
.25 oz fresh lemon juice
.5 oz simple syrup 
4 dashes rose water
seltzer
fresh mint and blackberries for garnish

 

method:

Muddle 6 blackberries (save 3 for garnish) with fresh mint in the bottom of your cocktail shaker until fully smashed. Add lemon juice, moonshine, simple syrup, ginger liqueur and rose water. Fill with ice, cover and shake vigorously for 30 seconds. Fill your glass with ice and strain cocktail into glass through a fine mesh strainer. Fill glass with seltzer and garnish with a skewer of remaining blackberries and fresh mint sprig. 

 

Salted Blackberry Margarita

Summertime is great for fresh berries. We recently picked some sweet wild blackberries...well, sweet with a seriously f-ing tart one every now and then! Of course, the first thing that came to mind is "what drink can we put these in?"

Margaritas don't have to be neon green to be delicious - in this case they can be friggin' fuchsia! One thing to keep in mind when working with seeded berries like blackberries and raspberries is while you may want the flavor, you probably don't want the seeds. They are just a pain in the ass...so take the extra step to strain your drink. You'll be glad you did when you pose for that margarita-induced drunken selfie without seeds in your teeth.

 

equipment:

cocktail shaker
muddler
fine mesh strainer
margarita glass

ingredients:

9 fresh blackberries, divided
2 oz blanco tequila
1 oz Patron Citronage (or other orange liqueur)
juice of one lime (about 1 oz)
kosher salt for rim
lime and blackberries for garnish

 

method:

In the bottom of your cocktail shaker, muddle 6 blackberries (save 3 for garnish) until fully mashed. Add lime juice, tequila, Citronage and fill with ice. Shake like hell for about 30 seconds. Run a lime around the rim of your glass before rimming with salt. Carefull fill glass with chipped ice and strain cocktail into glass through fine mesh strainer. Garnish with a skewer of blackberries and wedge of lime.