Far East Side

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Cocktail History

The Far East Side is a modern cocktail that was created by bartender Kenta Goto at his establishment Bar Goto in New York City, New York. It’s a Japanese-inspired variation of the classic Southside that pairs a base of sake and tequila with floral elderflower liqueur, tart lemon, and herbal shiso leaves.

Cocktail Ingredients

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Sake: This is a spirit made in Japan with fermented rice, koji, yeast, and water. We used Kurosawa Nigori Junmai Sake because it has a full-bodied flavor with creamy umami and sweet fruit notes. For a mocktail version of this drink, try amazake in place of the sake.

Tequila Blanco: This is a spirit made in Mexico with unaged agave and water. We used El Jimador Tequila Silver because it has a light and palatable agave flavor with notes of grapefruit and apple. For a mocktail version of this drink, try Lyre’s Non-Alcoholic Agave Blanco Spirit in place of the tequila.

Elderflower Liqueur: This is a liqueur made with elderflowers, citrus, herbs, sugar, and alcohol. We used Edinburgh Gin Distillery Elderflower Gin Liqueur because it’s high quality and has a fresh, floral aroma and flavor. For a mocktail version of this drink, try Monin Non-Alcoholic Elderflower Syrup in place of the liqueur.

Lemon Juice: This is the liquid juice of a lemon. We used freshly squeezed lemon juice.

Shiso Leaves: This is an aromatic herb. We used fresh shiso leaves.

Bartending Tools

To make this cocktail, you’ll need the following bar tools:

Jigger: This is used to measure and pour ingredients. We used the Japanese jigger from the A Bar Above 14-Piece Silver Bar Set.

Boston Shaker: This is used to shake ingredients. We used the Boston shaker from the A Bar Above 14-Piece Silver Bar Set.

Hawthorne Strainer: This is used to strain out ice and solid ingredients after the cocktail is shaken. We used the A Bar Above Hawthorne Strainer.

Paring Knife: This is used to cut ingredients. We used the OXO Good Grips 3.5 Inch Paring Knife.

Juicer: This is used to juice citrus. We used the ALEEHAI Manual Fruit Juicer.

Tasting Notes

The Far East Side is a light and airy drink that features sake and tequila aromas, the tastes of both, a hint of citrus, and herbal notes from the elderflower liqueur.

Our Opinion of This Cocktail Recipe: Overall, we both thought this cocktail was very tasty. It’s definitely what we’d consider a warm weather drink, so we’d save the Far East Side for a summer afternoon or maybe a garden party where we don’t want our guests in a drunken stupor by the early afternoon.

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Recipe

This cocktail recipe was adapted from Session Cocktails: Low-Alcohol Drinks for Any Occasion by Drew Lazor.

AuthorSession Cocktails

Yields1 ServingPrep Time5 mins

Ingredients
 2 oz Sake
 ½ oz Tequila Blanco
 ¾ oz Elderflower Liqueur
 ¼ oz Lemon Juice
 4 Shiso Leaves

Method
1

Add sake, tequila, elderflower liqueur, lemon juice, and three shiso leaves to a mixing glass.

2

Muddle leaves gently.

3

Strain into another mixing glass.

4

Add cubed ice.

5

Stir for 10-20 seconds.

6

Strain into a cocktail glass.

7

Garnish with shiso leaf.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 2 oz Sake
 ½ oz Tequila Blanco
 ¾ oz Elderflower Liqueur
 ¼ oz Lemon Juice
 4 Shiso Leaves

Directions

Method
1

Add sake, tequila, elderflower liqueur, lemon juice, and three shiso leaves to a mixing glass.

2

Muddle leaves gently.

3

Strain into another mixing glass.

4

Add cubed ice.

5

Stir for 10-20 seconds.

6

Strain into a cocktail glass.

7

Garnish with shiso leaf.

Far East Side

Make It a Mocktail: Use amazake in place of the sake, Lyre’s Non-Alcoholic Agave Blanco Spirit in place of the tequila, and Monin Non-Alcoholic Elderflower Syrup in place of the liqueur to try a booze-free version of this drink.

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More Herbal Cocktails

If you like this herb-flavored cocktail recipe, here are a few others we’ve tried that you may enjoy:

Lemon Thyme Gin & Tonic Cocktail Recipe

Lemon Thyme Gin & Tonic: A lemon gin cocktail made with lemon juice, thyme syrup, Indian tonic water, and a lemon wedge

Wintertime Tea Cocktail Recipe

Wintertime Tea: A Yellow Chartreuse cocktail made with black tea, sparkling lemonade, winter herb syrup, a lemon slice, and a rosemary sprig

Southside Cocktail Recipe

Southside: A gin cocktail made with lime juice, simple syrup, and mint

Rosemary Gin & Tonic Cocktail Recipe

Rosemary Gin & Tonic: A gin cocktail made with grapefruit shrub, lime juice, grapefruit tonic water, grapefruit slices, and rosemary

This post contains affiliate links, meaning we make a small commission each time you purchase a product using our links. Product images sourced from Amazon Product Advertising API. Amazon affiliate links last updated on 2023-03-25.

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