“We like making cocktails with homemade ingredients and more funky, interesting spirits,” says Mie N Yu’s manager and head bartender, Christopher Kelley. “But the most popular drinks are still the fruity vodka concoctions. And I can see why—those drinks taste good.”
Cosmopolitans may reign supreme among the crowd at this popular Georgetown pan-Asian restaurant, but Kelley’s got a slew of—no offense, Sex and the City fans—more inspired and less obvious cocktails on the menu. At the top of his list this summer: the Eastern Promises ($11) and the Flying Dragon ($11). The first is a spin on a gin rickey, made with Hendrick’s gin, muddled limes, and a splash of soda. A five-spice infused simple syrup adds the Eastern flavor that gives the drink its name. The five spices? Cardamom, cinnamon, clove, star anise, and ginger.
“I actually enjoy drinking this one,” jokes Kelley. “And I’m not a big gin fan.”
Kelley’s other favorite, the Flying Dragon, plays on two drinks: the summer favorite Arnold Palmer (half lemonade, half iced tea) and its alcoholic brother, the John Daly, which adds vodka to the mix.
“That’s always a popular summer drink among my friends” says Kelley. To integrate the cocktail into Mie N Yu’s menu, Kelley added some “Far Eastern flair” by using jasmine green tea and a simple syrup infused with ginger root. The result is a refreshing cocktail that goes down as easily as a cool glass of lemonade yet still packs a lingering punch.
Check out our video of Kelley making the Flying Dragon above, and make sure to get the recipe below.
Chris Kelley, Mie N Yu
4 lemon wedges
2 ounces SurReal ginger-peach vodka
2 ounces jasmine green tea
½ ounce ginger-infused simple syrup (for instructions on how to make the syrup, see the video)
Muddle three lemon wedges in a cocktail shaker. Add the vodka, green tea, and ginger-infused simple syrup. Add ice and shake. Strain the mix into a highball glass filled with fresh ice. Add a lemon wedge as garnish.