We’re embarking on a (virtual) US cocktail tour and we’ll be featuring our cocktail choice for each of the 50 States.
The list is totally subjective and doesn’t necessarily reflect the most popular cocktail in every State but each drink will be chosen because it has some ties to the State…and because we thought it’d make for a good party drink!
SOUTH CAROLINA: SPIKED BLUEBERRY MINT LEMONADE
Lemonade is a staple among Southern beverages, so here is a Charleston classic drink with a twist recommended by Icebox Bar’s Boris Van Dyck.
- Cook a quart of blueberries, 12 oz of sugar, 12 oz of water, and four to six large sprigs of mint on medium heat for 15 minutes.
- Muddle the blueberries and mint during the process, then pass through a fine mesh strainer and cool in the refrigerator.
- Mix one part of your blueberry/mint blend with two parts lemon juice and three parts water to make the lemonade.
- Shake 1.5 oz of Striped Pig Vodka and 4 oz of your blueberry mint lemonade, strain over ice in a rocks glass, and garnish with a lemon wheel.
Source: Borrowed & Blue
OHIO: BUCKEYE MARTINI
This Martini cocktail variation takes its name from Brutus Buckeye, the Ohio State University mascot. The preparation is super easy!
- 3 oz Gin
- 1/2 oz Dry Vermouth
Stir with cracked ice and strain into a chilled Martini glass. Garnish with black - not green! - olives.
Source: Drinks Mixer
WISCONSIN: BRANDY OLD FASHIONED
When did Wisconsinites change the rule on how old fashioneds should be made in their State? Word has it; it was at the Chicago World Fair in 1893. Brandy distiller Korbel was there serving Old Fashioned cocktails made with their brandy instead of whiskey and Germans visiting from Milwaukee latched on to the twist.
Try it for yourself and see if you, yoo, prefer it to the original:
- Place 1 sugar cube in an Old Fashioned glass and splash it with several dashes of angostura bitters
- Add a dash of soda water (just enough to dissolve the sugar), 1 orange slice, and 1 Maraschino cherry
- Gently muddle to crush the fruit but not pulverize it
- Fill the glass with ice cubes
- Add 2 oz. of brandy
- Top off with more soda
- Garnish with another cherry or two
CONNECTICUT: HOT BUTTERED RUM
Connecticut is at its most glorious in the fall, so it makes sense for our drink pick to be one that is perfect for this time of the year!
- 2 cups water
- 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2/3 cup dark rum
Bring water, butter, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt to a boil in a 1 1/2- to 2-quart saucepan over moderately high heat. Reduce heat and simmer, whisking occasionally, 10 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in rum and garnish with a cinnamon stick. Serve hot.
KENTUCKY: MINT JULEP
With Mint Julep sort of being the official cocktail of the Kentucky Derby, this is an easy pick! So, pull out your fanciest hat and enjoy this drink!
- Place 10 mint leaves at the bottom of an old-fashioned glass and cover with 1 ½ teaspoons of superfine sugar. Muddle them together until the leaves break down.
- Add a splash of Seltzer water
- Fill ¾ of the glass with ice
- Add 2 ½ oz. Kentucky bourbon whiskey
- Add another splash of Seltzer water
Stir and garnish with a sprig of mint!
Source: Alton Brown/Food Network
ALASKA: SMOKED SALMON BLOODY MARY
Alaska is known for its smoked salmon so it should be no surprise that its version of Bloody Mary is spiked with smoked-salmon vodka! Try this version from Kito’s Kave (Petersburg):
- 1 ½ oz. smoked-salmon vodka
- 4 dashes Tabasco
- 4 dashes Worchestershire sauce
- 4 dashes celery salt
- 2 dashes onion powder
- 2 dashes garlic powder
- 8 oz. tomato juice
- add ice to chill
Garnish with a green olive, a celery stick, a slice of lemon and a stick of salmon jerky…if you want to go all the way!
Source: Grub Street
HAWAII: MAI TAI
Prominently featured in Elvis Presley’s film, Blue Hawaii, Mai Tai is one of those cocktails that can at least help us pretend we are chilling on a beach in the Aloha State… Try this carbonated version from Honolulu’s Pint & Jigger.
In a shaker, combine:
- 1 oz. Rhum J.M. Blanc
- 1 1/2 oz. Appleton Estate rum
- 1/2 oz. Pierre Ferrand dry orange curaçao
- 1/2 oz. lime juice
- 1/2 oz. orgeat
- 2 dashes Hawaii Bitters Company Tahitian Lime bitters
Shake with ice and strain into a glass filled with ice.
Top with soda water and float 1 oz. Cruzan Black Strap rum on top.
Garnish with a cherry and a slice of pineapple!
Source: Grub Street
Stay tuned for the rest of our cocktail picks!