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3 Cocktails to Add to Your Must-Drink List This Spring

New menus from Herb & Wood, Juniper & Ivy, and Sycamore Den bring lighter, sweeter flavors


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Herb & Wood's smokey, floral Mezcal & Flowers cocktail. | Brogen Jessup Photography

Springtime means cocktail menus with a focus on lighter spirits and hints of sweetness. Here are three to add to your must-try list.

 

Juniper & Ivy's Salt of the Earth. | Photo: Madison Rosen

Salt of the Earth @ Juniper & Ivy

What’s in it: Vida mezcal, tequila, Ancho Reyes liqueur, beet juice, lemon juice, mole bitters, honey, cracked salt.

Why you should try it: This is the inaugural cocktail menu from Joe Fisketti, who has filled bartender Eric Johnson’s large shoes after Johnson departed Juniper & Ivy to open The Smoking Gun. Fisketti enjoys working with mezcal and tequila, and this cocktail contains a double dose of agave spirits. Spice from Ancho Reyes, earthiness from beets, and a bit of savoriness from the salt make for a winning combo.

 

Mezcal & Flowers @ Herb & Wood

What’s in it: Agave de Cortez mezcal, Chareau aloe liqueur, Chartreuse, lime, agave, mint.

Why you should try it: The Mezcal & Flowers is featured on another inaugural menu, this time by Meghan Balser. She recently took over for Will Van Leuven, who helped open Little Italy’s Herb & Wood two years ago. Balser’s specialty is whiskey (she was at North Park’s Seven Grand for years), but here she’s created a delicate, yet straightforward mezcal cocktail that builds on Agave de Cortez’s smokey, floral notes. And it looks mighty pretty, too.

 

Den After Dark @ Sycamore Den

What’s in it: Vodka, Jagermeister, housemade orange curaçao, tangerine juice, lime juice, clove syrup, soda.

Why you should try it: Jagermeister’s comeback a few years ago wasn’t just a fad, as bartenders continue to find new ways to use the German herbal liqueur. While it pairs well with rum, Sycamore Den’s Jesse Ross opted for a base spirit that doesn’t compete with the cocktail’s mix of citrus and spice. This cocktail is served in specially designed retro glassware that, unfortunately, wasn’t available just yet for a photo, so keep an eye on the Den’s IG feed.


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