June 08, 2016

Asian ingredients in Miami's cocktail culture

Asian ingredients have been popping up all over in the last several years, however, there are some ingredients that remain somewhat mysterious to many diners. Everyone has likely had a lychee martini but does everyone know what lychee is or its origins?
Shiso, yuzu and lemongrass are among other ingredients that are plentiful and underexplained. Here we break down some of the fabulous Asian fruits, herbs and other touches with a brief explanation and examples of cocktails featuring these ingredients that can be found in some of Miami’s hottest destinations

Mojito Posh Nosh; Barbancourt Rhum, shiso, mint, lime and lychee

Ingredient: Shiso, a Japanese herb with a unique citrus-like flavor that some would say is close to basil or mint.

Cocktail: Mojito Posh Nosh; Barbancourt Rhum, shiso, mint, lime and lychee

Where to find it: KYU

 Lotus Blossom

Ingredient: Calpico, a Japanese soft drink that comes in a variety of flavors and serves as a light, tart and creamy base in the Lotus Blossom.

Cocktail: Lotus Blossom; sudachi shochu, belvedere, yuzu, calpico

Where to find it: Makoto

beefeater gin

(Photo Credit: Moris Moreno Photography)

Ingredient: Lemongrass, a culinary herb in Asian cuisine with subtle citrus flavors

Cocktail: Killer Bee; beefeater gin, kelvin lemon, thai chili, ginger

Where to find it: NaiYaRa, 1854 Bay Road Miami Beach, FL 33139

Mojito Posh Nosh

Ingredient: Dragonfruit, obtained from the cactus species, is a uniquely delicious fruit that adds a colorful element with its bright pink hue.

Cocktail: Dragonfruit Mule; Reyka Vodka, Dragonfruit Puree

Where to find it: The Continental, 2360 Collins Ave, Miami, FL 33139

Sushi Garage

Ingredient: Kumquat, a hardy, olive-sized South Asian citrus fruit.

Cocktail: Kumquat Mojito; sake, St. Germaine, mint, lime, kumquat, Perrier

Where to find it: Sushi Garage

Sushi Garage drinks

Ingredient: Lychee, a tropical fruit native to China with a rough, pink-red rind and a soft, sweet flesh inside.

Cocktail: Lychee Mule; Tito’s Vodka, lychee puree, lime juice, SOHO Liqueur, ginger beer

Where to find it: Sushi Garage


Ingredient: Yuzu, a citrus fruit and plant originating in East Asia. It is believed to be a hybrid of sour mandarin and Ichang papeda.

Cocktail: Yuzu Daiquiri; Facundo Neo Rum, Bacardi 8, Yuzu sake, lime

Where to Find It: Komodo; 801 Brickell Ave., Miami, FL 33131

Cocktail: Samurai Old Fashioned

Ingredients: Japanese Harmony Hibiki Suntory Whisky, Brown Sugar, Angostura Bitters, Orange Zest

Where: Radio Bar

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