Ramps are popping up at the farmers' market, rhubarb is hitting dessert menus and the mercury is finally starting to rise. Peak spring produce season is kicking off, and vegetables and fruits are making their way from plate to glass at some of the country's best bars and restaurants. So go ahead and eat drink your vegetables.
① Early Spring Garden at Il Buco Alimentari in NYC
At this Downtown Italian favorite, Reisetbauer carrot eau-de-vie (yes, you can make alcohol from carrots) meets Contratto bianco vermouth, sunny saffron, English peas, lime and serrano chiles. It's the perfect level of spice to kick off a cool spring evening.
② Oh Snap! at Pacific Cocktail Haven in SF
Channel your inner sass with this mix of gin, sherry, a yeast-fermented drink called turbo, absinthe, lemon and, of course, snap peas. While you're at the bar, you might also want to try the Shiso Delicioso with blanco tequila, shiso, red bell pepper and citrus.
③ Rabarbaro Rosa at Lupo Verde in D.C.
Before diving into pastas and pizzas, sip on this fruity cocktail made with prickly pear, rhubarb purée, thyme, bubbly Prosecco, Amaro Donna Rosa and marasca cherry.
④ Khus Khus at August 1 Five in SF
This high-end contemporary Indian spot is bringing the taste of a native Indian grass called khus, otherwise known as vetiver, to its cocktail menu. The woodsy syrup is shaken with vodka and lime for a slightly sour but vibrant taste.
⑤ Celery & Chartreuse Daisy at Union Square Cafe in NYC
Danny Meyer's ever-seasonal restaurant doesn't shy away from vegetable cocktails. Case in point: this number, which blends smoky mescal, celery root, a lime cordial and fino sherry. Sip on it while you're waiting for the restaurant's sunny carrot pasta.
⑥ Low & Sloe Cosmo at Bad Hunter in Chicago
This buzzy newcomer is all about vegetables, thanks to dishes like beet tartare with white anchovy and flax seed crisps. To go with the veg-forward menu, there are cocktails like this one, which brings together spring strawberries with gin, Campari, lime and Clément Créole Shrubb.
⑦ Dove Dispatch at The Bennett in NYC
Bar legend Meaghan Dorman is celebrating spring in Tribeca with this cocktail that brings together bell pepper syrup, grapefruit, Campari and tequila. It's rounded off with a chile-salt rim and seltzer.
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