The American Surrealist cocktail at Zero Cafe + Bar came from the mind of bartender Charlie Bolin as he observed the vibrant work of artist Richard Hagerty. To pay homage to the painter's upcoming exhibit at the Charleston City Gallery, Bolin tweaked the classic whiskey sour into something more artful.
Bolin combines Bulleit rye whiskey, fresh-squeezed lemon juice, a lavender simple syrup, a few dashes of Bittermen's orange bitters, and a bit of liquid salt solution, which will add flavor to the foam created by the egg white added next. "The egg white mellows out the sour flavor and makes everything cohesive," explains Bolin. He dry shakes the ingredients (without ice) to froth up the beverage and then adds ices and shakes a few more times. After letting the drink settle, Bolin floats Cabernet Sauvignon on top to give the cocktail the same visual punch as Hagerty's paintings.
American Surrealist and Bolin can be found at Zero Cafe + Bar at 0 George St.