Bartender Bryan Galligos made this emerald concoction at Bacchus Bar at the Kimpton Hotel Vintage in Portland, Oregon, in 2017 for a celebration of the release of “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.” Galligos uses a bright bunch of smashed basil to give this Yoda-inspired drink its requisite flush of green, reminiscent of the Jedi master’s signature skin tone. Sage simple syrup is a nod to Yoda’s wisdom, and a couple of those leaves make a nice, perky Yoda ear garnish.
Aside from the cutesy but earnest homage to the iconic space Muppet, the cocktail is a bright and flavorful drink in its own right. Made with calvados, an apple brandy from Normandy in northern France, the Drink Me, You Will also contains fresh-squeezed apple cider (not hard cider or anything carbonated) to really amplify the apple notes, making it an eminently quaffable concoction. While other apple brandies are distinct from calvados, you can substitute something like an apple jack or eau-de-vie in a pinch.
Sage simple syrup serves as more than just an homage to the wise Jedi master: it also adds to the vivid green hue of the crushed basil and gives the drink an aromatic depth. If you have leftovers of it, the bright green syrup would work well in something like a Gimlet, adding even more verdancy and botanical notes. Galligos also notes it would work well in “a variation on an Old-Fashioned with a bold whiskey and some fun bitters," as well as a Cobbler using an apple brandy.
A large part of the drink’s appeal comes from its appearance. Adding sage leaves clipped to the edge of the glass with the miniature clothespins that are popular in cocktail bars, or just a long pick, amplifies the drink’s similarity to Yoda. Wrap them each in a basil leaf first for an even more pronounced Yoda-like appearance.
- 1 1/2 ounce calvados
- 1 ounce apple cider
- 1/2 ounce sage simple syrup*
- 1/2 ounce lemon juice
- 6 basil leaves
- Garnish: Sage leaves
Add all the ingredients to a shaker with ice and shake.
Strain into Martini glass.
Garnish with 2 fresh sage leaves. If possible, clip to either side of the glass using miniature clothespins or a pick.
*Sage simple syrup: Heat 1 cup sugar and 1 cup water together over medium-low heat, stirring often, until dissolved. Allow to cool. Transfer to an airtight container, add 8 fresh sage leaves, cut in half, and steep overnight. Remove in the morning.