Shochu Old-Fashioned

Silver Lyan Team | Washington, D.C.

Shochu Old-Fashioned

During Shochu Week, bar tastemakers showcase their individual flavor and cocktail flair by incorporating shochu from different Japanese regionalities and ingredients into a special, limited-time cocktail menu—learn more and find a bar near you.

Sweet potato shochu takes center stage in this classic Old-Fashioned construct. Its earthy sweetness is accented by salt and pepper in the form of a salted black pepper caramel, used both as a syrup to sweeten the drink and hardened into a sweet-and-savory garnish.

  • 2 1/4 ounces Satsuma Kuradashi Genshu sweet potato shochu
  • 2 1/4 ounces Satsuma Kuradashi Genshu sweet potato shochu
  • 1/3 ounce salted black pepper caramel (see Editor’s Note)
  • 1/3 ounce salted black pepper caramel (see Editor’s Note)
  • 2 dashes ash bitters (see Editor’s Note)
  • 2 dashes ash bitters (see Editor’s Note)
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters

Garnish: orange peel, salted black pepper caramel shard (see Editor’s Note)

  1. Stir ingredients with ice.
  2. Strain into a rocks glass over a large piece of ice.
  3. Express orange peel over the glass to release essential oils, then discard peel.
  4. Garnish with a salted black pepper caramel shard .
Editor's Note

Salted Black Pepper Caramel Syrup
1 cup water
2 cups Demerara sugar
1/3 teaspoon salt
1/3 teaspoon Szechuan peppercorns

Place water in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a low boil, then add sugar and salt, stirring until dissolved. Remove from heat. Add Szechuan peppercorns and stir. Strain through a cheesecloth.

Ash Bitters
Mix charred potato skins into Regans’ Orange Bitters No. 6. The ratio should be 5 percent skins to 95 percent bitters, by weight. For example, 5 grams charred skins to 95 grams bitters.

Salted Black Pepper Caramel Shard
232 grams heavy cream
30 grams unsalted butter
4 grams flaky salt, divided
200 grams granulated sugar
85 grams corn syrup
57 grams water
2 grams vanilla extract
3 grams black peppercorn, ground into powder, divided

Combine cream, butter and 2 grams salt into a small saucepan and cook over medium heat until all ingredients are melted. Combine sugar, corn syrup and water in a large saucepan over medium heat and cook, swirling until the syrup is at 310°F and amber in color. Pour cream mixture into sugar mixture, and cook until the caramel reaches 245°F. Remove from heat and whisk in the vanilla and 1 gram black peppercorns. Pour the caramel into a baking pan lined with parchment paper that has been sprayed with nonstick oil. Sprinkle the top of caramel sheet with remaining salt and ground peppercorns. Let cool to room temperature, then cover and let sit overnight. Lift the caramel out of the pan and cut the caramels into shard-like shapes.

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