This might be a peculiar trend, but savoury cocktails are allegedly soaring in popularity this year. Learning how to balance the elements of flavour – sourness, bitterness, sweetness, spiciness, saltiness — is one of the fundamental tenets of both cooking and mixology. These new cocktails are certainly evident of experimentation!
In this article, we examine the quirky and innovative trend to the cocktail landscape, and also share a few select recipes too. You never know, your future guests onboard could be hooked!
When Did This Trend Begin?
This year, in 2023, savoury cocktails have grown in popularity this year.
Flavours sourced from (for example) parmesan, mushroom, and tomato have working their way onto drinks menus and into classic beloved cocktails.
There’s already the classic Bloody Mary that’s been a favourite for a long time (as well as its many offshoots, including the Red Snapper), so savoury tastes aren’t necessarily brand new to the scene. Of course, Dirty Martinis and Spicy Margaritas have always been there – and now there’s plenty of room for exploration! Only this year, there have been multiple videos (mainly on Instagram) about adding parmesan on top of an Espresso Martini. This kick-started the viral drinks trend: the Parmesan Espresso Martini.
Odd as it may initially seem, pairing such flavours isn’t unheard of. In Latin America, people have long-enjoyed combinations of Cafe con Queso and Chocolate con Queso, so naturally it’s time others around the world started to test their tastebuds!
Read more SYC: Guest Cocktails: 2023’s Delectable Mixology
What Recipes Are Out There?
1. Cold Pizza
Inspired by the margarita pizza and the iconic margarita, the Back Room at Double Chicken Please (a bar in New York) experiments with craft cocktails like this one.
- 30 ml Cheese & Burnt Toast Tequila
- 10 ml Lime-Basil Cordial
- 5 ml Oolong Tea Honey
- 40 ml Tomato Water
- 15 ml Egg White
This one’s a savoury, unami-flavoured shot, interestingly made with broth.
- 2/3 ounce Absolut Elyx vodka
- 1/4 ounce Dry Sack 15-year-old oloroso sherry
- 1 ounce pho broth
- 1/4 ounce lime juice
- 2 drops mineral saline
- Garnish: cilantro leaf
Strange enough, this one is made with ingredients you’re probably more likely to fetch from the kitchen than behind the bar.
- 4 or 5 cilantro sprigs
- 1 1/4 inch Thai chili slice
- 3/4 ounce fresh lime juice
- 3/4 ounce cream of coconut, preferably Coco Lopez
- 2 ounces lemongrass- & makrut-infused gin
- 2 drops mineral saline
- 5 drops fish sauce (preferably Red Boat)
- Garnish: Thai chili and makrut lime Leaf
This is another one from the Back Room at Double Chicken Please, inspired by a bowl of Japanese cold noodles and a piña colada.
- 40 ml BACARDÍ Superior
- 25 ml Coconut Syrup
- 30 ml Pineapple Juice
- 15 ml Cucumber Juice
- 10 ml Lime Juice
- 1 Dash Sesame Oil
- 2 ounces bourbon
- ½ ounce allspice dram
- ¼ ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
- ⅛ ounce simple syrup
- 2-3 dashes aromatic bitters
- Orange peel for garnish (optional)
So, that was just a short list of the savoury cocktails out there – just a little saltier, a little richer, and a little earthier than what we might be used to.
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