Grilled Cherry Mezcal Cocktails

July 21, 2015

 Grilled Cherry Mezcal Cocktail Recipe | Fake Food FreeI was preparing kebabs for the grill when the idea came to me. We love grilled fruits, but one fruit I had never grilled were cherries. I’m sure it’s been done before, but the idea was new to me. It was also pretty exciting because I adore cherries. Blueberries have always been my favorite fruit, but these days cherries are neck and neck for first place.

Considering a few grilled cherries led me to wondering what kind of smoky sweet flavors that grilling would add to them. No surprise that those thoughts led to our home bar and the bottle of smoky mezcal that I’ve found to be a challenging ingredient to incorporate into our drinks. If there is one thing that it had to go well with the spirit, I figured grilled cherries would be it. 

Grilled Cherries for Grilled Cherry Mezcal Cocktails! | Fake Food Free

So I slid some pitted sweet cherries on a few skewers and placed them on the grill for about 5 minutes. They brightened up beautifully with just a few appealing blackened spots.

Eaten straight off the grill, they were wonderful. I could definitely pile a couple, or ten, on top of some vanilla ice cream. But they were so juicy and sweet that I couldn’t stop thinking about that mezcal cocktail idea. 

Grilled Cherry Mezcal Cocktail Recipe | Fake Food Free

So I mulled the cherries to extract all the tasty juices. Lemon juice seemed like a good idea to add some acidity, but once the mezcal was in, it needed two things — a little sweetening up and a bite of something on the savory side. A splash of agave nectar seemed logical as a sweetener, but I added a little Cointreau to the mix, too. I finally decided on basil for the savory note. The aroma and flavor it added ended up a winner. 

Grilled Cherry Mezcal Cocktail Recipe | Fake Food Free

Even with the deep smoky flavors of this cocktail, it’s bright and refreshing. Perfect for a hot summer night. 

Grilled Cherry Mezcal Cocktail Recipe | Fake Food Free

Grilled Cherry Mezcal Cocktails
Makes: 2 drinks
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Ingredients
  1. 12 pitted sweet cherries
  2. 1 large basil leave, torn
  3. 1/4 oz. fresh lemon juice
  4. 3 oz. mezcal
  5. 1 oz. Cointreau
  6. 1/4 oz. agave nectar
  7. Crushed ice
Instructions
  1. Slide 6 cherries onto each of two presoaked wooden skewers or metal grilling skewers. Grill at about 400 degrees F for 5 minutes, turning once while they cook. Remove from the grill and allow to cool.
  2. Place 10 of the cherries, the basil leaf and the lemon juice in a cocktail shaker and mull together until the cherries are smashed and the juice is extracted.
  3. Add the mezcal, Cointreau and agave and stir. Add a handful of ice and stir well for 15 to 20 seconds, until chilled.
  4. Fill two 7 oz. cocktail glasses with crushed ice. Strain the cocktail into the two glasses. Garnish each with a grilled cherry and serve.
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  • Joanne July 21, 2015 at 4:51 am

    Smoky cherries + smoky mezcal sounds like the perfect cocktail! Next time I’m near a grill, I’m taking it over to make this.

    • Lori July 21, 2015 at 6:30 am

      Definitely do it! Grilled cherries are my new favorite. Dessert, cocktails — yum!

  • suki July 21, 2015 at 9:20 am

    I love mezcal and ordering mezcal cocktails, but I haven’t brought a bottle home to try my hand at making my own. Love the smokiness, but it seems to be an added challenge in cocktail making! 🙂 Of course, I could just sip it straight too…

    • Lori July 21, 2015 at 9:39 am

      I need to consult with you about the best places to order them out! I haven’t ordered on yet. I like experimenting with it, but it is challenging. The smoky flavor is pleasant, but also so strong!

  • Cathleen @ A Taste Of Madness July 22, 2015 at 1:20 pm

    What a great idea! Why have I never thought of grilling cherries??

    • Lori July 22, 2015 at 1:24 pm

      I felt the same way! It’s an idea that has been hiding in plain sight all summer!