22 Brunch Cocktails To Kick Off Your Weekend
Coffee and orange juice? As if. Lazy Saturdays and Sundays demand something more potent. These drinks inspired by breakfast dishes — or mixed to perfectly pair with them — lend a spirited start to the day.
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Dunk This Donut: Tampa
Datz’s bar manager Morgan Zuch has lived in Florida her whole life, so when it comes to coffee, she often prefers it iced. To make her caffeinated cocktail, she starts with beans from local roaster Joffrey’s, which are ground, brewed and mixed with rye, black walnut bitters and Grind Coffee Liqueur, a collaboration between baristas and bartenders. The whimsical eye-opener is served up in a coupe glass, and garnished with a mini powdered doughnut from Dough bakery.
Honey Buzz Milk Punch: New Orleans
The Great Bergamot: San Diego
Chef Johnny Rivera of Great Maple wanted to create a citrus-based cocktail that was clean, refreshing and suitable for mornings. Named for the variety of orange that gives Earl Grey tea its distinctive aroma and flavor, the herbal and fragrant Great Bergamot mixes bergamot-infused vodka with ginger liqueur, rosemary, pineapple juice, lemon, agave and citrus bitters, served over a large cube and garnished with a sprig of rosemary.
Breakfast Negroni: San Francisco
Who says a classic Negroni — that boozy, bitter beverage invented in 1919 by the Italian count of the same name — can’t be enjoyed in the early hours? Wildhawk partner Jacques Bezuidenhout’s version evokes childhood nostalgia, as vermouth is infused with puffed chocolate cereal and chocolate salt bitters to offset the bitterness of the Campari and the kick of gin. The tipple is served on the rocks and garnished with orange peel cut into stars and hearts, much like lucky marshmallows in a cereal fronted by a leprechaun.
Bacon, Egg & Cheese Cocktail: St. Louis
Casual coffeehouse Half & Half takes flavors that people love in breakfast — sweet, salty, smoky and creamy — and combines them in the Bacon, Egg & Cheese Cocktail. Cold-smoked bourbon, maple syrup and lemon juice are dry shaken with a whole egg and mascarpone cheese (for a creamy mouth feel) then shaken over ice and strained into a coupe glass.
The Texas Breakfast: Austin
“The drink is inspired by the flavors of a campfire morning,” notes Sean Downey, a bartender at The Water Trough at Lone Star Court. “[It] uses sweet and savory ingredients to complement the spice and fruitfulness of Texas rye whiskey.” He starts with local rye, then adds a brown sugar-based simple syrup, maple syrup, sparkling apple cider and housemade candied bacon, topping it all with a cinnamon stick.