The first bar program Waites Laseter ran in New Orleans was at a ramen restaurant, where the strongest spirit behind the bar was sake. “How do I make sake into something interesting?” he asked himself. The first iteration of this Sake Martini-esque cocktail was the result. Since then, it has followed him to Root, where he now makes it with creamy unfiltered nigori sake that he infuses with blood oranges, sweet-savory rosemary syrup, dry curaçao and a little vodka—to kick the ABV up a bit. Laseter torches the rosemary garnish tableside, filling the air with the aroma of rosemary and raised phones, as people Snapchat the fiery show.
1 oz nigori sake
.5 oz Vodka
.5 oz Dry Curaçao
1 oz Rosemary syrup
Blood orange twist
Blood Orange-Infused Sake
1 lb blood oranges
1 720-ml bottle nigori sake
- Peel the rinds off the blood oranges.
- Split the peeled produce along the seams into 3-4 smaller pieces.
- Toss pieces of fruit into a container with a bottle of nigori sake.
- Seal the container and refrigerate.
- Let sit for about 12 days, stirring periodically.
- Strain the fruit out (hold on to it—it makes a lovely treat), and store infused sake in the fridge.
.25 Cup rosemary leaves
1 Cup water
1 Cup sugar
- Combine water, sugar, rosemary in saucepan.
- Bring to a boil stirring until sugar dissolves.
- Simmer for 1 minute, then remove from heat and let syrup steep for 30 minutes.
- Strain out leaves, and store in airtight container in fridge.