The Pit Stop
A summer drink from bar manager Sean O’Brien at The Grocery in Charleston, S.C., showcases an underused part of the peach — the pit. The Pit Stop is a cocktail with peach pit-infused bourbon, a basil and white pepper shrub and lemon juice.
Mealtop, a Korean shaved ice café chain from Seoul, South Korea, expanded earlier this month with two Southern California locations — one in Buena Park and the other in Los Angeles — for a total global unit count of 22.
In addition to the main offering of bingsoo, or shaved ice, the new stores offer a range of beverages such as this orange latte. It’s made with espresso, milk and orange syrup with orange segments. The drink can be served hot or cold.
A cold drink option for the California crowds at Mealtop is a “latte” featuring pat, or red bean paste, an ingredient commonly used in Korean desserts such as bingsoo or steamed buns. It also contains milk and an aged brown sugar syrup.
701West, a fine-dining restaurant located at The Times Square Edition hotel in New York City, serves a rum punch in a Japanese donburi bowl to resemble a bowl of ramen. The drink itself is crafted with rum, grilled pineapple syrup, lime and pineapple juices, gochujang, and red chile threads. The cocktail comes with a plate of jellied mango juice “noodles,” coconut strips, passionfruit, rambutan with freeze-dried black currants, and “fish cakes” made from dragon fruit, lychee-green apple and guava. It also includes bamboo straws as “chopsticks” and a coupe glass of sparkling sake. It’s meant for two people to share.
The cocktail program at Zeppelin in Washington, D.C., now includes “highballers,” highball cocktails that blend Japanese spirits with new cocktail vinegars and other mixtures from the property’s mixologists, brothers and partners Ari and Micah Wilder. The Getaway is crafted with Roku gin from Suntory, apricot liqueur, passion fruit, tamarind vinegar, Peychaud’s Bitters and bubbles from the pair’s new Toki Highball Machine.
As an off-the-menu twist, pastry chef Joey Schwab at Michelin-starred Spiaggia in Chicago offers patrons nine flavors of prosecco floats made with his scratch gelatos and sorbets, such as cherry limeade, passion fruit, blueberry ginger and rhubarb basil.
Price: Varies depending on choice of prosecco
Kitsby, an e-commerce baking education company, recently opened a brick-and-mortar dessert bar in Brooklyn, N.Y., with a menu of baked goods, coffees, teas and specialty drinks such as the Mangonada — Taiwanese-style mango ice slush layered with Tajín spices (lime, tamarind and chile flakes) and Chamoy (a fruity and spicy Mexican sauce). It’s topped with a spicy tamarind candy straw.
Bar manager Andy Haddock puts a local twist on the Brazilian caipirinha at Terra in Columbia, S.C. Haddock’s version is crafted with cachaça, peaches sourced from the state, simple syrup and lime.
The Smooth Talker
Co-head bartender Marina Holter is mixing up new drinks for the summer at The Whistler in Chicago. The Smooth Talker is a blend of fino sherry, moscatel pisco and molasses finished off with eucalyptus bitters, lemon and Topo Chico mineral water. The cocktail is served in a Topo Chico bottle for easy sipping.
Spheres of Influence
Holter combines baijiu, a Chinese grain liquor, and bubble tea, a popular Asian beverage that features boba, or tapioca pearls, for the Spheres of Influence. She creates the bubble tea in-house with taro root powder and coconut milk tea.
Marama Mama Punch
The Polynesian, a “fine Tiki lounge” from New York City-based multiconcept operator Major Food Group, is introducing large, group-friendly cocktails for New Yorkers looking to enjoy the summer weather. The Marama Mama Punch, for two to eight guests, is crafted with tea-infused vodka, rums, orgeats, bitters, and lemon, orange and pineapple juices. What takes the drink over the top is its presentation; it comes in an actual red Igloo cooler, bringing to mind memories of the beach, the park or a backyard barbecue.