We are now at the peak of summer here in the U.S. and the rest of the Northern hemisphere. One of the most supreme pleasures of these hot August weeks are the tastiest blackberries and raspberries. The sun’s long penetrating rays soak deep into the soil helping these fruits burst with deep sweet juices. This bonanza of ripe fruit often leads to overzealous purchases at the local farm stands and markets. Quarts of berries now sit in your refrigerator but you can’t possibly eat all of them even though your eyes try to convince you otherwise. Somehow, freezing them just won’t do these plump morsels any justice…they have to be eaten before they quickly turn soft and moldy but how? How about drinking them? That’s right, and what better way than in a delectable cocktail?
Only a decadent liquor steeped in a rich tradition will come close to matching such a blessed bounty
of nature. That’s where Old New Orleans Rum comes into the mix. Made by Celebration Distillation, the oldest premium rum distillery in the United States located on Frenchmen Street in New Orleans, Old New Orleans Rum comes from only the finest Louisiana blackstrap molasses that’s been harvested from sugar cane grown in the Mississippi Delta’s fine soil since the 1700’s.
My favorite of their several rum varietals is their Cajun Spice, a blend
combined with a kick of cayenne and cinnamon, and hints of nutmeg, ginger, and cloves. But only their light bodied Crystal white rum balances the sweet molasses, vanilla, & caramel undertones giving your languishing berries the respect they deserve in this recipe courtesy of Old New Orleans Rum:
1/3 cup each sliced strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries
8 large fresh basil leaves
2 Tb. Sugar
½ cup Club Soda
½ cup Old New Orleans Crystal Rum
1. Place basil and sugar in a glass. Mash until mostly combined
2. Add strawberries, blueberries, & raspberries and continue mashing until blended
3. Pour into a shaker, add rum and ice to the mixture, and shake well
4. Pour back into the glass and add club soda on top
photos courtesy of Steve Mirsky and Celebration Distillation