Los Angeles bartender Allan Katz was recently surprised to see fresh Meyer lemons alongside blueberries at his local Hollywood farmer’s market. “I thought they were just a winter citrus,” he says, “but apparently, some are ripe at the same time blueberry season is in full swing.” While the Meyer lemon’s tempered acidity nicely complements the acidic sweetness of the gastrique, Katz recommends shaking a bit longer than you normally would. “This one really needs dilution,” he notes.
2 oz. aged rum
2/3 oz. fresh Meyer lemon juice
3/4 oz. blueberry gastrique
2 dashes Bittermen’s mole bitters
2 dashes maraschino liqueur
Tools: shaker, strainer
Garnish: fresh blueberries
Combine all ingredients with ice and shake vigorously. Strain into a sour glass and garnish.
For the gastrique: Combine 16 oz. of water and 4 oz. of berries in a medium saucepan and simmer over medium-high heat for 15 minutes, stirring constantly. Finely strain the berry/water mixture through a cheesecloth-lined colander, pressing through as much liquid as you can. Measure the liquid and add an equal amount of white sugar to still-hot berry juice. Stir. Add 1/8 oz. of balsamic vinegar per quart of liquid. Will keep refrigerated for up to 4 days.
Allan Katz, Caña, Los Angeles