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Cherry Bark Gin & Tonic

Cherry Bark Gin & Tonic

RESTAURANT: Coquine, Portland, Ore.
DRINK: Cherry Bark Gin and Tonic
CREATOR: General manager and co-owner Ksandek Podbielski

"It's crisp and refreshing like a good gin and tonic should be, but the subtly almond-like and floral aromatics and flavors from cherryblossoms make it a little softer and a little warmer for these still rainy days and chilly nights of spring." – Ksandek Podbielski

Ingredients

  • 2 oz Martin Miller Gin
  • 2 oz House Cherry Bark Tonic (recipe below)
  • 1/2 oz lime juice
  • 1/2 oz Cherry Blossom syrup (recipe below)

Preparation

  1. Serve tall over ice, garnish with lime and a small budding cherry branch

Cherry Bark Tonic:

  • zest: 4 lemons, 1 lime, 4 oranges (juice reserved)
  • 1 Tablespoon Citric Acid
  • 102 grams chinchona bark (or 25g chinchona bark powder)
  • 102 grams cherry bark
  • 5 grams whole long pepper
  • 6 grams Whole black pepper corns
  • 6 whole star anise
  • 1/2 teaspoons ground allspice
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt

Combine all dry ingredients in a stainless stock pot, cover with 4 quarts of cool water. Bring to a boil over medium heat, turn off heat and let cool to room temperature. Add reserved citrus juice. Strain through fine mesh sieve and again though a coffee filter. Tonic will be cloudy. Carbonate as needed in an ISI canister and keep cold.

Cherry Blossom Syrup:

  • 500 grams organic sugar
  • 500 grams water
  • 2 quarts fresh cherry blossoms (still opening to not quite fully opened is best, from fruit bearing trees is preferable, but ornamental is okay too)
  • 125 oz fresh squeezed lemon juice (helps set color and keeps flavors from turning muddy)

Dissolve sugar in boiling water, allow to cool to warm. While still quite warm to the touch immerse cherry blossoms in syrup, add lemon juice, and let steep until syrup is flavorful but not over extracted, roughly 1.5 hours. Too short and syrup will lack flavor, too long and syrup will finish bitter, vegetal and woody. The ideal note is a little floral, surprisingly almondy, and a bit fruity.


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