The Master Blend: A Bartender Series – Christopher Longoria

Listen to The Master Blend: A Bartender Series – Christopher Longoria”

This week on the Bit by a Fox Podcast, we’re kicking off our second chapter of The Master Blend – A Bartender Series. In collaboration with BERTOUX Brandy, the Bit by a Fox Podcast will host a series of interviews with some of America’s most acclaimed and innovative bartenders. 

This second installment is a continuation of interviews that will have each bartender discuss their distinct style, biggest inspirations, and how they’re making their mark on today’s cocktail culture. 

Kicking off this second Master Blend series is Christopher Longoria, Beverage Director at the insanely popular restaurant, Che Fico in San Francisco. We talked poetry, California, hip hop, his 20 year evolution behind the bar, and discovering as an artist and as a bartender, less is more.

This week’s featured cocktail is Christopher’s BERTOUX Brandy cocktail currently featured at San Francisco’s Che FicoSMOKED STRAWBERRIES 

1 oz Smoked Strawberry Juice* 
.75 oz Earl Grey Tea Syrup** 
.25 oz Ramazzotti Amaro
.5 oz Lime Juice 
Pinch of salt 
4 Dashes Absinthe (through a bitters decanter) 
1.5 oz BERTOUX Brandy  

Shake, double strain. Serve up, in a coupe. No garnish.

*Smoked Strawberry Juice: 
In a hotel pan, stack a perforated hotel pan. Lightly coat the perforated hotel pan with Vegeline. Add a flat of strawberries (capped) to the perforated hotel pan. Place over an open fire hearth for approximately 40 mins. Line a second perforated hotel pan with cheese cloth. Stack on top of a hotel pan that has clearance for the strawberry juice that will be pressed. Carefully place smoked strawberries over the cheesecloth. 

Cover the strawberries with the excess cheese cloth. Using an additional hotel pan stacked over the strawberries, add an appropriate amount of weight to press out the juice (we use a case of beer). Allow for at least 24 hrs of press time. Press in a space at wine cellar or fridge temperature. Once pressing time is done, manually squeeze excess juice from the strawberries through cheese cloth into appropriate container. 

**Earl Grey Tea Syrup: 
In a vac seal bag add: Loose leaf Earl Grey Tea: 42 g, Orange Peel (zested): 12 g, Clove: 8 ct, Water: 1 qt (800 g). 

Let infusion sit at room temperature for 24 hrs. Strain infusion into a quart container to confirm volume. 

Post infusion: 
Add the infusion into a pot. Using and induction burner, bring to a simmer (hot enough to melt sugar). Add volume of granulated sugar equal to the infusion volume. Stir until sugar is fully dissolved. Allow to cool.

All photographs by Anthony Parks on behalf of BERTOUX Brandy

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