Recently, beverage director Amanda Reed was thinking spring drinking and Beaujolais—the light, red-fruited, gamay from France—came to mind. If the flavors of fresh strawberries and earthy mushrooms work so beautifully in those wines, she imagined they’d work well in a cocktail too. So, she added some grassy rhum agricole and savory fennel and a fresh take on a spring classic was born. While this very Seattle strawberry cocktail is not currently on the menu at Heartwood Provisions, it’s an easy DIY for the home mixologist.
Strawberry Mushroom Smash
2 oz Rhum J.M. Blanc
3/4 oz Lime Juice
3/4 oz Wildflower Honey Morel Syrup
3 dashes of Bar Keep Fennel Bitters
Rinse strawberries with cold water and cut off tops. Combine strawberries and lime juice in a tin and muddle. Add the rest of the ingredients. Add ice, shake and fine strain into a Collins glass. Add crushed ice, swizzle and top with crushed ice.
*Wildflower Honey Morel Syrup
Makes 12 ounces, enough for 16 cocktails
1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh morel mushrooms**
3/4 cup water
3/4 cup Ballard Bee Company Wildflower Honey
Combine the mushrooms and water in a small saucepan, cover with a lid, bring to a boil then remove from heat. Let steep for 30 minutes. Fine strain into a mason jar (reserve mushroom slices for garnish) and add honey. Stir until dissolved. Store refrigerated for up to 7 days.
**Be sure to always cook wild morel mushrooms as they should never be consumed raw.