The pandemic and quarantined life have me missing traveling, especially to New York City. I usually make a couple of trips there each year, hanging in Manhattan and more importantly, Brooklyn. I have a love affair with Brooklyn, it feels like a second home to me. Since I couldn’t make a trip there yet this year, I decided to find a cocktail that would stir up memories of my favorite neighborhood, Greenpoint. This recipe comes from the book Shake by Eric Prum & Josh Williams. It’s a great resource if you are looking for some fun, new cocktails to create at home!
If you’ve ever traveled to Brooklyn from Manhattan, you know you need to take the L train to get there. Hence the name of this drink. The L train takes you to the quaint neighborhoods in Brooklyn, where during the warm months the streets are filled with flea markets, farmers markets, shoppers and people dining on side streets or secret urban backyard gardens. One sip of this libation and I was transported back to a time of happiness in the sun, where on a bustling Saturday, in the heart of Greenpoint, I was enjoying brunch & people watching.
I tried a few variations of this cocktail to get it to where I liked it. You can try different gins, but my go to is Drumshanbo Gunpowder Irish Gin. I used fresh lavender in the first cocktail, dried in the second, and lavender syrup in the final version. Of the three, the syrup version was my favorite. It enhanced the drink giving it the floral taste without the little pieces of lavender getting caught in your teeth. The dried was just a bit too much for me with the added texture to the drink, but the fresh buds were tolerable. Feel free to try each yourself and see which one is your preference!
The L Train
Gin – 4 oz St. Germain – 2 oz Lemon juice – 1 oz Lavender: Fresh – 2 springs; Dried – 2 sprigs; Syrup – 1/2 oz (any more and it will be too sweet) Seltzer
Add gin, St. Germain, lemon juice, and lavender to shaker. Add ice to above the level of the liquid. Shake vigorously for 10 seconds.
Strain liquid into 2 chilled glasses (I prefer mine over ice, you don’t have to do that though). Top with seltzer. Garnish with dried lavender if you wish or just a lemon slice. Drink in good company.
Cheers – Chrissy