• This is the first offering in a new every-Saturday feature being carried on three of my sites — Cocktail of the Week, Dowd On Drinks, and, of course, here on Drinking New York. I’ll be combing through all sorts of sources — my own archives, old bar books, readers’ suggestions, distillers’ ideas — even press releases from breathless PR people seeking to get their clients’ products mentioned. If you have a favorite, don’t hesitate to ask.
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This seasonal delight comes from the McKenzie boys (the unrelated Brian and Thomas) at Finger Lakes Distilling in Burdett, NY, to make use of two things near and dear to their hearts: fresh strawberries and their own Vintner’s Vodka. (They also make a Vintner’s Wild Berry Vodka.)
Their plain vodka isn’t so plain. It is made from a blend of local grapes, and comes off both fruity and floral, with notes of orange blossom, cantaloupe and vanilla and a slightly spicy finish.
3-4 fresh strawberries plus one extra for garnish
2-3 fresh basil Leaves plus one extra for garnish
2 ounces Vintner’s Vodka
1/2 ounce simple syrup
Muddle strawberries and basil in shaker. Add vodka and simple syrup and shake over ice. Strain into martini glass straight up or rocks glass with large ice cube. Top with club soda and garnish with remaining strawberry and basil leaf.
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