Strawberry Season is Fleeting, Capture it in the Glass
The strawberry is a fan favorite. As kids we gorged ourselves on plump seasonal berries. Today, it seems the strawberry is always in season, much to the berries detriment. Today’s supermarket strawberries are big and red, but lack the tart and unctuous strawberriness I remember from my youth. Let’s take this youthful nostalgia berry and pair it with the very adult Tequila.
At Shrub District, we set out to capture this ethereal strawberry flavor in liquid form. Our strawberry shrub provides waves of beautiful strawberry goodness, with a backbone of tart acidity that we need in all fruit. So how do we use it?
Tequila let’s the berry shine in a simple, straightforward highball:
Tequila (and Mezcal) Is Trendy — Tequila and its cousin Mezcal have become one of the trendiest spirits in the industry. They are both agave-based spirits. Tequila must be made from Blue Agave grown within the historic boundaries of the Mexican state of Tequila. Mezcal is not bound by these rules. It can be made from many different kinds of agave and can be grown and distilled anywhere. Most production comes from Mexico, but you could make a mezcal in Baltimore too. The best way to explore the world of agave spirits is to taste as many different Tequilas and Mezcals as possible.
Herbaceous + Berry — From a flavor perspective, agave-based spirits tend to be herbaceous or grassy. This is a reflection of their production and aging processes. It can take 30 years to grow a mature agave, so let’s not hide that beautiful character by using column stills that strip out too much flavor. Most of these spirits are aged lightly — Blancos can be unaged, Reposados aged just 2 months, and Añejos aged one year, and Extra Añejo aged three years. To me the fresh flavors of distilled agave come across as grassy and herbal. Try mixing them with strawberry to enhance this quality while taming the spirit.
From Short to Long — Agave drinks are usually served short. But a highball allows us to sip on fresh tequila and strawberry goodness happily while we play garden games or lounge by the pool. I love playing with the structure of a drink to spark a change. Let’s make a Tequila highball and give the Mexican dive-bar classic, the strawberry Margarita, some length for summer sipping.
Let’s make a drink!
What’s your favorite Tequila or Mezcal?