You might already be used to pickled ingredients in your cocktails. Just consider the Gibson, which practically requires a pickled onion in order to earn its name. But pickled ingredients can go far beyond cocktail onions, spanning various fruits, vegetables and flavors. They’re easier to make than you might think, and the pickling brine itself adds extra depth of flavor to drinks.
Here, pear slices pickled with a number of herbs and spices top off a delicately savory cocktail that incorporates the brine, too.
- 1 3/4 ounces Madre mezcal
- 3/4 ounce Lustau fino sherry
- 3/4 ounce pickled pear brine*
- Garnish: pickled pear slice
- Garnish: rosemary sprig
Add all ingredients into a mixing glass with ice and stir until well-chilled.
Strain into a chilled Martini glass.
Garnish with a pickled pear slice and a rosemary sprig.
*Pickled pear brine: Slice a medium-size pear (about 7 1/2 ounces) into 12 equal slices, removing the core and seeds, and place into a 16-ounce glass jar. Add 6 whole black peppercorns, 2 peeled and halved small garlic cloves, 1 medium bay leaf, 1 rosemary sprig, 1 dill stem and 1 pinch of ground cinnamon into the jar. In a small saucepan, boil 1 1/2 cups water, then add 1/4 cup granulated sugar and 2 teaspoons of salt and stir until dissolved. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Use this mixture to fill the jar 3/4 full, and fill the remaining space in the jar with 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar. Cover the jar tightly with a lid and invert it several times to mix the liquid. Allow to sit at room temperature for 48 hours before consuming and refrigerate after opening.