In this fruity take on a Whiskey Sour, husband and wife duo Heather Heuser and Jason Marcus of Brooklyn’s Traif infuse scotch with fresh blueberries. “Scotch is a nice, strong spirit that can hold up nicely when infusing with fruit,” says Heuser. “Blueberry is a great fruit because it’s tart and sweet, so it’s already a nicely balanced element to add into cocktails.” Heuser mixes the infusion with fresh lemon and creamy orgeat—a nutty syrup made here with toasted pistachios instead of almonds for a richer flavor. “Together they work well in smoothing out some of the rough edges of the scotch,” Heuser says. A few sprays of crème de violette give the cocktail a subtle hint of florality and, of course, another wink to the ill-fated Willy Wonka character for whom the drink is named.
2 oz Blueberry-infused scotch
.5 oz Lemon Juice
.5 oz pistachio orgeat
3 sprays Crème de Violette
1 tbsp Fresh Blueberries
- Muddle fresh blueberries at the bottom of a shaker.
- Add scotch, orgeat and lemon juice to shaker. Add ice and shake.
- Strain over fresh ice into an old-fashioned glass.
- Top the cocktail with three sprays of crème de violette. If you don’t have an atomizer, give the glass a quick rinse with the crème de violette prior to building the cocktail.
- Garnish with cured blueberries (leftover from the infused scotch) or fresh blueberries, as well as a violet flower, if desired.
1 Cup Fresh Blueberries
1 750-mL bottle Scotch
- Remove enough scotch from the bottle for blueberries to fit without overflowing. Save it for mixing into a different cocktail, or sip neat while you infuse this recipe.
- Add blueberries to the bottle and infuse at room temperature for five days, shaking occasionally, then strain out blueberries.
- If desired, save the scotch-soaked blueberries for garnishing cocktails. Brooklyn bar Traif mixes the blueberries with half a cup of powdered sugar, half a teaspoon salt, zest and juice of half a lemon, and a quarter teaspoon of black pepper. The bar uses these cured blueberries to garnish their Violet Beauregarde cocktail.
1 Cup pistachios
2 cups Water
2 cups Sugar
.5 Cup brandy
2 tbsp elderflower liqueur
1/3 tsp salt
- Toast pistachios, then coarsely grind in food processor.
- Whisk ground pistachios with remaining ingredients, and transfer to an airtight jar.
- Let sit at room temperature for three days, shaking occasionally, pour into a bowl, then strain through a cheesecloth back into the jar.