Melon-Lime Soda

Masa Urushido, Katana Kitten | New York

This is a layered take on the usually straightforward highball—“a little touch of Japan,” says Masa Urushido. To balance the sweetness of Midori liqueur, he typically uses a mix of juice from Japanese sudachi, a super-sour Japanese citrus fruit, and regular (Persian) limes; if sudachi is used, dial the lime component back to a half-ounce.

Ingredients

Serving: 1

  • 1 ounce lime vodka, preferably Absolut Lime
  • 1 ounce Midori melon liqueur
  • 1/4 ounce lime juice
  • 1/4 ounce sudachi juice
  • 1/2 ounce matcha-lime cordial (see Editor's Note)
  • chilled soda water, to top

Garnish: fresh lime leaf

Directions
  1. Place an ice spear or a stack of ice cubes in a frozen highball glass or handled beer stein.
  2. Add the vodka, Midori, matcha-lime cordial, sudachi juice and lime juice.
  3. Top with chilled soda water and gently stir.
  4. Garnish with a lime leaf, and serve.
Editor's Note

Matcha-Lime Cordial:
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups water
zest of 4 limes, cut into strips with a peeler or paring knife
2 1/2 teaspoons matcha green tea powder

Reserve 3 tablespoons of the water. Combine the sugar and remaining water in a saucepan, and warm over low heat to just below a simmer, stirring constantly. Once all the sugar has dissolved and just as the mixture begins to simmer, remove from the heat. Add the lime zest, cover the saucepan, and let cool to room temperature. The edges of the lime zest should be lightly browned. Strain the syrup through cheesecloth into an airtight 1-pint glass container.

In a small bowl, whisk the matcha powder in the reserved 3 tablespoons water until fully combined. Add the matcha solution to the syrup, and stir well to combine. Seal the container and store in the refrigerator for up to one month. Shake the syrup well before use to reincorporate any matcha that has settled at the bottom.