When people hear that their favorite chef has a herb garden they don' think anything of it. When people hear that their favorite bartender has a herb garden they usually do a double take. Today, bartenders who are on the cutting edge of drink recipe creation are using many of the same herbs that chefs use to whip up great tasting and interesting new cocktail drink recipes.
Seattle mixologist Ryan Magerian of Kathy Casey Food Studios/Liquid Kitchen gave The Seattle Times this list of essential herbs:
spearmint, basil, thyme, rosemary, tarragon, sage, and cilantro.
Ryan uses them to add a unique taste to many traditional popular cocktail drink recipes. The trick to using these flavorful essential herbs is muddle small portions of the herbs before mixing them. The muddling will release the oils. Start off using small amounts. You don't want to overpower the drink with the flavors of the herbs. Try using a dash and see how you like it. The most popular cocktail that uses herbs is the mojito. Mint leaves are muddled in the bottom of the glass to release the oil and give the drink a light spearmint favor. The next time you make a Margarita try using a bit of sage. Change up the mojito by substituting basil for mint leaves. Basil is one of the herbs that can be used in a variety of classic drink recipes that use fruit juices. Its light distinctive taste has a way of balancing the strength of liquor and the sweetness of fruit, while adding a fresh and taste-bud pleasing flavor to wake up the standard cocktail recipes.
One of the most popular bartending lessons at the American Bartending School is giving the students a homework assignment to invent a cocktail recipe using herbs. Want to try these creative drink recipes? Visit the American Bartending School Drink Blog
Jack Tiano founded the American Bartenders School in 1969. The school has trained thousands of men and women to be professional working bartenders. The school offers a hands on training program and job placement. Locations are in New York, New Jersey, Palm Springs, and Chicago.
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