Cocktails for Japan
Where: Beretta, 1199 Valencia (at 23rd St.), 695-1199
When: Now through Fri., April 15
Cost: $11-$15 per drink
The rundown: Beretta bar manager Ryan Fitzgerald is featuring three drinks that pack a humanitarian buzz along with the regular kind. Proceeds for the trio go to Red Cross relief efforts in Japan.
There's the revived classic Japanese Cocktail (brandy, orgeat, angostura bitters, lemon twist, $11), alongside a Beretta original, the Plum Blossom (Hibiki whisky, red Pineau de Charentes aperitif, angostura bitters, pinch of salt, $13). For the purist, a straight shot of 12-year blended Hibiki Japanese whisky ($15) also helps the cause. Produced in the style of Scotch, the aging process is uniquely Japanese. The whisky spends time in used sherry and bourbon casks like a lot of Scotches do, then gets a twist via a portion of the spirit picking up age in used umeshu (plum liqueur) and new Japanese oak barrels. Tropical notes from the Japanese plum and the incense quality of the wood give the Hibiki layers of interest best displayed with some dilution. Make sure you ask for an ice cube or two, and be sure to pat yourself on the back.