Tokyo 75 · Pabu
Negroni Bianco · Fox & The Knife
The Watsonian · Bully Boy Distillers
Order any cocktail with “75” in its name and you’ll probably get some combination of spirit, sparkling wine, and a sour flavor. Like the category’s granddaddy—the French 75—these drinks tend to be bright and refreshing, if a little one-note.
The Tokyo 75 at Pabu in Downtown Crossing is hardly one-note, however. This version splits its sour element between lemon juice and yuzu, with a wildcard addition of cherry blossom syrup that’s easily made by combining brewed tea with sugar.
“A lot of tea syrups cold-steep for a long period of time, or you steep it until you get some of the bitter effect,” says bartender Mitch Marsman. “This is not that. This is meant to have a much brighter, more floral flavor.”
The Tokyo 75 is much less sweet than other French 75 derivatives, with an acidic snap of yuzu. However, the Japanese citrus fruit does more than just boost flavor. “The yuzu gives it great color contrast and a richer mouthfeel,” says Marsman.
2 ounces dry prosecco
1 ounce Bombay Sapphire Gin
½ ounce cherry blossom syrup*
¼ ounce lemon juice
¼ ounce yuzu juice
Luxardo Maraschino cherry, for garnish
Add all ingredients except prosecco and cherry to a shaker with crushed ice and shake until chilled. Strain into a Champagne flute, top with prosecco, and garnish with a cherry.
*Cherry Blossom Syrup (yields about 1½ cups)
1 packet cherry blossom tea
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
Heat water to a boil, remove from heat, and steep tea packet. While tea is still hot, add sugar and stir to combine. Let cool. Keeps about 2 weeks, refrigerated.