Sunday, September 20, 2015

Muddling Together Memories - Muddled Mulberry Manhattan

Cocktail Hour - Muddled Mulberry Manhattan

When I was in primary school, we went through a phase of silk worms. Every second family had silk worms. I’m actually surprised there wasn’t a massive rise in silk shirts worn in the local area. I’m assuming it started off as a classroom “pet” or lesson or something. My childhood memories are sketchy at best. But I remember two things about that Silk Worm Saga:

  1. Disused washing machines are a great silk worm home
  2. Silk worms love eating mulberry leaves.

Kids would bring in big bags of mulberry leaves to share about for all the other kids with silk worms. This was my first real memory of mulberries. The second memory I have is visiting my grandma when I was around 12 and seeing her arms and legs scratched to pieces and her triumphantly showing us the ice cream containers full of mulberries she’d picked from the bramble growing wild down the back of her yard. Then we’d get to eat some mulberry compote with ice cream. Good times!

So when I was offered some mulberries, I grabbed a few to take home. Despite most of my recollections of mulberries being deeply rooted in my childhood, I thought a more adult offering was required for their use. Muddling a few with some rosemary and boozing it up with rye and vermouth; Manhattan style was where my tastebud’s imagination took me. Instead of bitters, I layered a teaspoon of Laphraoig whisky on top to give it a smokey edge. The resulting cocktail is strong, mildly sweet and intensely berry-flavoured. Garnish with a chocolate cracker or biscotti.


Cocktail Hour - Muddled Mulberry Manhattan
Cocktail Hour - Muddled Mulberry Manhattan
Cocktail Hour - Muddled Mulberry Manhattan

Muddled Mulberry Manhattan

5 mulberries
1 tsp panela sugar (or raw sugar)
4 fresh rosemary leaves
1 1/2 shots (50mL) rye whisky
3/4 shot (30mL)sweet red vermouth
1 tsp Laphraoig whiskey

Chill a martini glass.

In a cocktail shaker, muddle the mulberries, panela and rosemary. Add the rye and vermouth, then top up with ice. Put the lid on and shake until the outside of the container is frosty. 

Strain through the lid, through a tea strainer into the martini glass. Gentle pour the Laphroaig over the top. Enjoy!

Cocktail Hour - Muddled Mulberry Manhattan
Cocktail Hour - Muddled Mulberry Manhattan
Cocktail Hour - Muddled Mulberry Manhattan