Cocktail of the Month: Cardamom Berry Smash

by Andrew Yenne, photos by Sam Henderson

In June anything is possible. The summer is just beginning and with it holds the infinite possibilities of warm nights and fireflies, country roads and swimming holes and the knowledge that for 3 whole months it is perfectly acceptable to stare at the summer stars and simply dream.

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What better way to celebrate the official start of summer than with a sweet southern style cocktail filled with fresh berries and the exotic flavors of wonder?  The Cardamom Berry Smash.

savour… the sweet taste of summer

Cardamom Berry Smash:

Before you start:

This cocktail is as sweet as the season we are dedicating it to. The deep flavor of fresh black berries melds with the exotic spice of the cardamom syrup and the swirling citrusy botanicals of the gin to create a refreshing relief to the summer heat.

You will need your trusty cocktail shaker, a double old fashioned glass, your favorite London dry gin, green cardamom pods, fresh blackberries, heaps of ice, and fresh mint. A key ingredient to this summer creation is the fresh cardamom syrup. Cardamom is of course the exotic spice most known for its inclusion in Chai tea. It has a distinct citrusy flavor profile that matches nicely with the light gin.  

Cardamom Syrup recipe:

Bring 14 cardamom pods to a boil with 1 cup of water. Slowly add 1 cup of sugar to the boiling water and stir to dissolve. Keep at a slow boil for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let steep for 10 minutes.  Enjoy the citrusy spicy aroma. Strain and bottle.

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The Ingredients:

  • 4 blackberries
  • 1.5 oz London dry gin
  • .5 oz Cardamom Syrup
  • Club Soda to top
  • Ice
  • Fresh Mint 

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The Method:

  1. Muddle 4 fresh blackberries in a cocktail shaker.
  2. Pour .5 oz of cardamom syrup into shaker savoring the sweet citrusy scent.
  3. Fill cocktail shaker with ice.
  4. Shake vigorously to bruise blackberries and infuse the flavors together.
  5. Unscrew the top of your gin. Enjoy the ginny aroma goodness.
  6. Pour 1 ½ oz gin into shaker.
  7. Quickly swirl shaker to combine gin, remembering never to shake gin for fear of bruising the light botanicals.
  8. Do not strain, but pour entire contents of shaker into double old fashioned glass.
  9. Top with club soda.
  10. Garnish with fresh mint.