Balsamic Strawberry Smash

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One of the best things about spring is the first crop of strawberries that hits the stores, when the berries are plump and juicy and super sweet. One of our favorite combinations is combining balsamic vinegar with strawberries into a sweet and sour syrup that can be used on ice cream, shortcake or on waffles.  We recently made a batch to go on a bunch of waffles we made for dinner (because sometimes you just want brinner!) and we had a bunch of the syrup left over.  We were looking for a night cap, so we decided to experiment with the extra syrup and came up with this cocktail.  Strawberries and bourbon typically pair well, but we wanted something with a bit more bite so we used Bulleit Rye as our base spirit which ended up being really nice in this drink.

Balsamic Strawberry Smash

  • 2 oz Rye
  • 2 oz strawberry balsamic syrup (Recipe below)
  • 1/2 lemon slice (or 1/4 oz lemon juice)
  • 1 or 2 sliced strawberries

Muddle strawberries, lemon and strawberry balsamic syrup in the bottom of a cocktail shaker until the fruit is fully broken up. Add ice and bourbon and shake well until fully chilled. Double strain into a cocktail coupe. Garnish with a lemon twist.

Strawberry Balsamic Syrup

  • 6 strawberries, hulled and cut into chunks.
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 6 oz balsamic vinegar
  • dash of lemon juice

Cut the top off the strawberries and cut into the chunks. Place into a small sauce pan with brown sugar and balsamic vinegar. Heat over medium high heat, stirring until the sugar is fully dissolved. Once the liquid begins to boil, reduce heat to a simmer and cook until syrupy. The strawberries should be soft and easy to mush.  Allow the mix to cool if used in drinks, serve warm if on pancakes or waffles. Store in a mason jar.

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