Living in New York is hectic. The city moves at a break-neck pace, as does the bar scene. There’s always a new spot to take note of, and cocktail trends seem to come in fast-breaking waves that can leave your head spinning. As a spirits writer, it’s hard to separate yourself from the melee.
One of my favorite respites from the world was and still is, slipping into Bar Goto right after they open on a Sunday afternoon. It’s a time slot that is free from the chaos of a weekend night, where the Lower East Side street is serene, save for the remnants of the neighborhood’s weekend chaos (a lone shoe here, a walk-of-shame there). Rather than a catch-up with friends over eggs benedict, my take on brunch as always sitting down early on a Sunday evening, when the sun starts blanketing the LES in a rosy hue.
I generally love to try a new cocktail every time I go somewhere, but I was hooked from the first time I sipped the Sakura Martini.
First of all, floating delicately in the coupe glass is a salted cherry blossom, that almost blooms in the coupe as you drink it.
The Sakura Martini calls for Junmai Ginjo sake, dry gin, maraschino, and a pinch of salt. It’s got salinity, expressive, vinous flavors from the sake, and subtle florality. As you sip it, layers of flavors blossom.
Best of all? In the current times, it’s a simple sip to make at home.