As the daylight hours are getting shorter and the oppressive heat starts to cool off, it’s time to savor the final moments of summer with a refreshing beverage in hand. We turned to some of the newest bars on the New York City scene for their favorite seasonal ingredients, as well as what to shake and stir up before autumn approaches.
Penthouse FrozéCourtesy of Gokhan Cakmak, Director of Food & Beverage, The Marmara Park Avenue Hotel
2 ounces rosé
2 ounces Elit vodka
1.5 ounces fresh strawberry syrup
Turkish delight, for garnish
In a cocktail shaker, muddle the strawberry. Add some ice, the rosé, vodka and strawberry syrup; shake vigorously; strain into a tall glass and garnish with Turkish delight.
Perched 20 stories above the Marmara Park Avenue in Manhattan’s NoMad neighborhood lies The Blue Rooftop, a Mediterranean hideaway of blue tones and marble accents and views of nearby notable skyscrapers including the Empire State and Chrysler Buildings. Guests can expect mezze like watermelon “pizza” slices with berries, feta and mint, and smoked eggplant salad. At the bar, seasonal summer fruits and herbs are used to highlight fun takes on classics like the fresh fig margarita, made with tequila, orange liqueur, fig, honey and lime, and topped with fresh figs and lavender, as well as the aforementioned Penthouse Frozé.
“Frozen cocktails used to be for the beach, but they’ve become quite cosmopolitan recently with frozé leading the surge as a result of the popularity of rosé wine,” says Cakmak. “We created an elevated version of the frozé which balances Arizano, a rosé with more structure due to its Tempranillo variety, with the subtle, long, delicate notes of Elit vodka and just a touch of strawberry syrup.”
Bright n’ SunnyCourtesy of Masahiro Urushido, Managing Partner, Head Bartender and Director of Deliciousness, Katana Kitten
1.5 ounces white rum infused with butterfly pea flower (recipe below)
Dash of lime juice
In a highball glass filled with ice, add the pea-flower infused rum, lime juice and top with ginger beer. Garnish with lime and pineapple slice.
Brainchild of Masahiru Urushido, Greg Boehm and James Tune, the West Village watering hole Katana Kitten is a Japanese-American hybrid cocktail bar that features izakaya bites by chef Nick Sorrentino (think deviled eggs with white miso, spicy mustard and marinated salmon) and signature cocktails, boilermakers and high-brow highballs like the Shiso Gin & Tonic and the Bright n’ Stormy. “This drink has everything you desire for summertime,” says Urushido. “Bright blue-colored Banks rum (infused with butterfly pea flower) is very appealing to your eyes, and home-brewed lemongrass-ginger tepache is absolutely refreshing—more so than regular ginger beer.”
The Toucan Do ItCourtesy of Will Elliot, The Golden Hour at The High Line Hotel
1.75 ounces Cimarrón Tequila
.5 ounce lime juice
1 mango cordial
Dash of Bittermens Xocolatl Bitters
Banana leaf fronds, for garnish
Micro-planed cinnamon or cinnamon stick, for garnish
Add the liquid ingredients in a cocktail shaker filled with ice; shake vigorously and pour into a toucan-shaped vessel filled with crushed ice. Garnish with the leaves and cinnamon.
At the lush 2,000-square-foot outdoor pop-up oasis in Chelsea from Joshua Boissy and Krystof Zizka (of Maison Premiere and Sauvage fame), bar director Will Elliot brings forth frozen cocktails and spritzes to sip on while noshing on light seafood fare like soft shell crab sandwiches and razor clams frites.
Elliot’s favorite summertime ingredients include gentian liqueurs from France. “Slightly bitter, vegetal and racing, they are equally quenching by themselves or in a cocktail,” he says.
Butterfly Pea Flower-Infused Rum
750 milliliters white rum
1 tablespoon butterfly pea flower (dry)
Combine the rum and pea flower in a glass jar with a tight lid; shake well and let in sit at room temperature for 10 to 20 minutes; strain and reserve.
Photo of Penthouse Frozé courtesy of The Marmara Park Avenue Hotel.
Photo of The Toucan Do It courtesy of The Golden Hour at The High Line Hotel.