Sake Drinks

One of my calendar's recipes over the weekend called for sake, so I've been trying a few sake-based cocktails. There doesn't seem to be a ton of them out there, not that I've done an extensive search. Sake is so mild that it gets easily overwhelmed by the other flavors in a drink.

The most successful was a sake 'Manhattan': sake, Dubonnet instead of sweet vermouth, a dash or two of bitters. I think if I'd used a higher-end sake I would have liked this one better, but it wasn't bad. The Dubonnet brings flavors that sweet vermouth wouldn't.

The second one was the recipe from my calendar: citron vodka (I used Tanqueray), lemon juice, sake, ginger syrup. I soaked some candied ginger in vodka, which dried up into goo on the bottom of my pan overnight, so I just plunked in a few pieces of the ginger. I used a little less lemon juice than the recipe called for, but with the citron vodka, the drink was still awfully lemony. I should have added a little simple syrup to make up for the absence of a real ginger syrup; as I got to the bottom of the glass where the ginger was lurking, it got sweeter. Probably not a bad drink if you have ginger syrup, and I'd skip the citron vodka and just use regular.

The last one was one I made up, a version of my calendar's: pear vodka, a teaspoon of lemon juice, sake, and a drizzle of grenadine. Here again, the lemon was a tad too much, but I liked it. You couldn't taste the sake (at least I couldn't), but the pear and the lemon and the sweetness of the grenadine work well together. Try it.