With this drink, Choi sought to transport guests to a Prohibition-era barbershop speakeasy, the likes of which often had names like The Blind Pig or The Blind Tiger. This drink’s mix of sweet and sharp—from plum liquor to Bombay Sapphire to almond milk foam—strives to mirror the mix of sensations of visiting a barbershop.
- lemon peel
- 1 1/2 ounces Bombay Sapphire gin
- 1 ounce pu’erh tea–infused plum liquor (see Editor’s Note)
- 1/3 ounce lavender jasmine syrup (see Editor’s Note)
- 1 drop saline solution (see Editor’s Note)
- 1 dash Miracle Mile Bay Rum bitters
Garnish: almond milk–washed Italicus foam (see Editor’s Note)
- Express a lemon twist into a mixing glass. Add the remaining ingredients to the mixing glass, then fill the mixing glass with ice.
- Stir until chilled, and strain into a Nick & Nora glass.
- Froth the almond milk–washed Italicus, and cover the drink with foam.
Pu’erh Tea–Infused Plum Liquor
1 375-milliliter bottle plum liquor, preferably SeoulNight
4 grams loose-leaf wild aged pu’erh tea
Combine plum liquor and pu’erh tea in a vacuum bag and seal it. Set an immersion circulator to 150°F in a large water basin. Once the water is ready, submerge the vacuum bag for 2 hours. Cool the bag in an ice bath, then use a cone filter to strain out tea. Keeps at room temperature, for up to a month.
Lavender Jasmine Syrup
300 grams sugar
150 grams water
6 grams lemon zest
1 tea bag jasmine green tea
1.5 grams dried lavender
Combine sugar and water in a pot, and simmer on low heat until the sugar dissolves. Once it’s dissolved, add lemon zest, jasmine green tea and dried lavender, and steep for 15 minutes over low heat. Strain with a cone filter, then store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
Combine 1 gram salt with 4 grams water. Stir or gently heat until combined. Keeps, refrigerated, for up to 1 month.
Almond Milk–Washed Italicus Foam
200 grams Italicus
100 grams Bombay Sapphire gin
100 grams lemon juice
70 grams cucumber, peeled and chopped
50 grams orange juice
7 grams mint leaves
200 grams almond milk
50 grams coconut milk
20 grams muddled coriander seeds
egg white powder
Combine Italicus, Bombay Sapphire, lemon juice, cucumber, orange juice and mint leaves in a blender. Process until incorporated, then pour into a large container.
In a saucepan, combine almond milk, coconut milk and coriander seeds, and simmer until just before boiling. Remove from heat.
Pour into a container with the blended mixture, and stir well to combine. Pour through a cone filter to clarify.
Measure the mixture’s weight in grams. Add water to equal 20% of the mixture’s weight in grams, add xanthan gum to equal 0.1% of its weight, and finally, add egg white powder to equal 0.2% of its weight.
Stir the mixture until combined, then use a milk frother to make the foam.