Plenty of bartenders like working with edible flower garnishes or infusing blooms into liqueurs to make cocktails that are both romantic and aromatic. People drink with their eyes, not only their mouths, as they say. And you might as well add noses to that because taste is inextricably intertwined with smell.
Spirits made from flowers take the aromatic approach to crafting cocktails one step further. This crop of flowery spirits and liqueurs is perfect for perfumed drinks with nuanced flavor profiles that suggest the best of a springtime bouquet. Take your pick of these five now.
Made in England, this London-dry-style gin has a delicate floral cast. The geranium it’s named for mingles mild citrus aromatics with a gentle rosewater sweetness, giving way to a brisk, mildly peppery finish. Try it in a flowery variation on a traditional Gimlet or Collins.
From Greenbar Distillery, a Los Angeles producer of organic spirits, this amaro-style liqueur imparts a subtle perfume to bitter classics, like Negronis or Boulevardiers. Like its namesake bloom, it has a rosy hue and a mix of bitter and bold floral notes. You can also feel good about the distillery’s pledge to plant a tree for every bottle it sells.
Hana is Japanese for “flower,” as the orchid etched into the teardrop-shaped bottle suggests. The gin is made on Treasure Island in San Francisco and distilled with only four botanicals: lavender, orange peel, lemon peel and juniper. Look for delicate white floral notes, finishing crisp and fresh. Try it in a flowery take on a Gin & Tonic.
This vodka from New York’s scenic Hudson Valley has its namesake lush bloom on the bottle’s label and the sweet, lingering notes of marshmallow and coconut inside. Unlike its more flowery counterparts, it has just the faintest suggestion of white flowers on the smooth finish. The producer recommends it for Vodka Tonics.
From craft producer Cardinal Spirits, this golden liqueur mixes elderflower and jasmine blossoms with raspberries and a touch of hibiscus. It’s full of almond and vanilla sweetness with bright berry and playful floral notes on the finish. With a splash of lemon and soda, it makes a delightful Spritz.