Natasha Bermudez, Llama San | New York

When people come into Llama San looking for an agave cocktail, this is what Natasha Bermudez steers them toward (the restaurant does not currently keep mezcal on their backbar). Though the ingredients bear little resemblance to the agave spirit, Bermudez entices drinkers with the sour bite of sudachi, which, when paired with shochu, sherry and toasted white sesame syrup is akin to the tangy, slightly saline profile of a Margarita. “It’s obscure, even for this menu, but people love it,” says Bermudez.


Serving: 1

  • 1 ounce shochu, preferably Kintaro Mugi Shochu
  • 3/4 ounce amontillado sherry, preferably Lustau Amontillado Sherry
  • 1/2 ounce walnut liqueur, preferably Rapa Giovanni Ratafia di Andorno
  • 1/2 ounce Aperol
  • 1/2 ounce sudachi juice
  • 1/2 ounce toasted white sesame syrup (see Editor's Note)

Garnish: lime zest

  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing tin and shake with ice.
  2. Strain into a rocks glass over a large ice cube.
  3. Garnish with lime zest.
Editor's Note

Toasted White Sesame Syrup Toast: Toast 80g white sesame until golden, stir constantly (don’t let it burn). Take 1,100g cane syrup, combine with toasted sesame in sous vide silicone bag. Preheat water bath at 155ºF, place bag in heated water and let it cook for 1 and a half hours. Place in ice bath until it cools down. Strain with cheesecloth, vacuum seal. Label, date, time, refrigerate.

Tagged: llama-san, shochu