Some may still sip rosé all day, but sake could take over as the hot drink for hot weather. The Japanese rice wine typically served with sushi is appearing in more restaurants and breweries and being paired with everything from charcuterie to cheese to barbecue.
Sake can be enjoyed on its own, but bartenders are creating fun cocktails with it, too. At Sunday in Brooklyn, they’ve given the old college-favorite sake bomb a modern makeover with their new cocktail called the Tokyo Bodega. It’s made with sake and St.Germain liqueur and vanilla bean-infused simple syrup, which is served in a beaker and you add a little of that sake mix to a Miller High Life beer.
And Stillwater Artisanal, a Brooklyn-based beer company, has developed a beer-sake hybrid called Extra Dry. It’s a saison-style pale ale made with rice and served cold in a can. “It’s made to emulate beer, but it tastes more like a dry wine,” says Stillwater Artisanal founder and brewer Brian Strumke.
New York is also home to its first sake brewery now. Brooklyn Kura has a taproom serving fresh-pressed sakes paired with interesting options like fried fava beans and toasted nori. “I think sake is underrepresented,” explains Brooklyn Kura president Brian Polen. “And once people kind of discover its potential, it’s going to be a great summer drink.”