For football season, we had a bartender from each NFL team’s hometown provide the perfect cocktail to represent their team.
Jesse Held, a bartender for Minneapolis’ Jester Concepts group, felt a certain obligation to not only create a cocktail that represents the Vikings but also pays homage to Minnesota’s “fabric of heartiness.” “The color had to be purple for many reasons, for our recent loss of our Prince and of course our gridiron gladiators, the Minnesota Vikings,” he says. “The gold leaf garnish is an atypical flash we Minnesotans aren’t accustomed to having, but staying true to our purple people eaters, by wearing purple and gold, is only fitting when it comes to imbibing in the name of the Vikings.”
This drink has a base of aquavit from Minneapolis’ Tattersall Distilling. “Using aquavit was essential to making a cocktail that was a true representation of the Great White North,’” says Held. To sweeten the drink, he uses a syrup and a shrub from his elixir company, Earl Giles, which can be subbed for homemade versions.
Add all of ingredients to a shaker with dense ice and shake vigorously.
Double-strain into a cocktail glass over a chunk of hand-chipped ice.
*Jalapeño-infused aquavit: Steep one large washed and slice jalapeño in a 750 mL bottle of aquavit for four to six hours, then remove the jalapeño.
**Homemade blueberry-thyme shrub: Make a syrup by combining 1 cup gently crushed blueberries, 1 cup water, 1 cup sugar and a few thyme sprigs of in a small saucepan over medium heat. Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved and remove from heat. Strain when cooled. Combine 2/3 blueberry-thyme syrup with 1/3 apple cider vinegar. Store in the refrigerator until use.
***Homemade vanilla syrup: Combine 1 cup water, 1 cup sugar and 2 halved vanilla beans in a small pot over medium heat. Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved and remove from heat. When cool, strain into a plastic container, and refrigerate until use.