Curbside Pickup

Let us fantasize for a minute here: we're in the Yucatan, having drinks on chaise lounges by the infinity pool overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. In this fantasy, I have a hot JLo bikini bod. Hell yah!

Reality: the "Gulf of Mexico" is actually a kiddie pool I bought online out of desperation to get us through this spectacularly dull Covid summer. Fortunately, we have plenty of cocktails in our repertoire to keep us entertained. Also, we heard that Covid doesn't travel in water, so let's jump into a sparkling pool (of our minds) and drink one of these on a swan floatie (pool not necessary to drink on a floatie)!

SHISO SHOCHU MOJITO

This recipe is resurrected from this post in 2018. I've modified it and made it a short cocktail here because it felt especially luxurious to drink it out of this sexy glassware specimen, the Kimura Rap Martini Glass. JLo would definitely sip on this. Add club soda in a highball glass, like the original recipe, to make this an equally refreshing poolside drink!

INGREDIENTS
Makes 1 drink

3 oz Tan Taka Tan Red Shiso Shochu
3 shiso leaves (one for garnish)
1/2 of a lime, quartered
3 barspoons of Kuma Honey syrup (equal parts honey and water, easiest when water is warm) 
Ice

TOOLS
Birdy CS500 Cocktail Shaker
Hinoki Wood Muddler

METHOD
1. Put the limes and shiso leaves in the shaker. Muddle together. 
2. Add the honey syrup and shochu. Fill shaker with ice. 
3. Shake!
4. Strain into a glass, add shiso for garnish.

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YUZU SALTY DOG

This has been on heavy rotation during happy hour at my house. It's so easy to make. I've updated this run-of-the-mill restaurant bar drink with a yuzu twist. It's the perfect post-workout cocktail after slaving away to get that hot JLo bod (JLo must indulge in a cocktail after her workouts, right?).

I've been really into the Haku Vodka so use it here, but for a less boozy alternative, it's great with Jougo Kokuto Shochu. For you gin lovers, Roku Gin works well too!

INGREDIENTS
Makes 1 drink

1 part vodka to 2 parts grapefruit juice (I like 1.5oz vodka to 3oz juice, but adjust to your taste) 
If using shochu, go ahead and use 1 part shochu to 1 part juice (I would do 3oz shochu to 3oz juice)

Yuzu Salt
Ice

TOOLS
Birdy CS500 Cocktail Shaker

METHOD
1. Add spirit, grapefruit juice, and a generous pinch of Yuzu Salt to shaker. Fill with ice. Shake.
2. Strain into a rocks glass, rimmed lightly with the salt. Garnish with grapefruit peel.

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LAK'S GINZA + TONIC 

Last week we received an email from Lakshman, Yoko's stepdad, with the subject line "Umami Cocktails." See, it runs in the family, our obsession with good drinks! This is one of the cocktails from his email and turns out, totally delicious, especially poolside. Beware – you might drink it all in one gulp!

INGREDIENTS
Makes 1 drink

2.5 oz Ginza no Suzume Barley Shochu
5 oz Tonic water
Ice
Yuzu peel for garnish (use lemon if you don't have yuzu)

METHOD

1. Add shochu and tonic into a highball glass. Fill with ice. Stir.
2. Garnish with yuzu peel.

Kanpai! If you do indeed make any of these cocktails, please tag us on Instagram @umamimart! See you poolside!

A special thanks to our friend and mentor Dick S. for letting us use his dreamy pool for this photo shoot.

Column: Happy Hour
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