The Cherry Blossom

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Cocktail History

The Cherry Blossom is a sake and gin cocktail that was created by Jay and Leah Hall of Gastronom Cocktails, a blog they started in 2012 as a way to share recipes, tours of local restaurants, and travel posts. The drink was inspired by the famous Japanese cherry blossom festival, and it pairs its spirits with tart cherry, pomegranate, and citrus to create a springtime cocktail that lives up to its name in taste.

Cocktail Ingredients

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

Sake: This is one of the base spirits. We used TYKU Junmai Sake because it’s high quality with smooth and soft sake flavors and it’s affordable. For a mocktail version of this drink, try Gekkeikan Alcohol Free Daiginjo Sake in place of the sake.

Cherry Liqueur: This adds cherry flavor. The original recipe called for Dancing Pine Distillery’s Cherry Tart Liqueur, but that wasn’t available in our area so we used Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur for its earthy aroma and sweet, creamy cherry flavor. For a mocktail version of this drink, try cherry syrup in place of the liqueur.

Gin: This is the other base spirit. We went with Roku Gin because it’s a Japanese craft gin. For a mocktail version of this drink, try Lyre’s Non-Alcoholic Dry London Spirit in place of the gin.

Grenadine: This adds tart pomegranate flavor and sweetens the drink. We made ours using Alex’s homemade recipe.

Triple Sec: This adds sweet citrus flavors that balance out the other dry ingredients. We went with Cointreau because it’s one of the highest quality triple secs on the market. For a mocktail version of this drink, try Lyre’s Non-Alcoholic Orange Sec in place of the triple sec.

Lemon Juice: This adds sour citrus flavors that balance out the other ingredients. We prefer to use fresh citrus juice because it’s less bitter than the bottled stuff and tastes better.

Cherry: This is the garnish. We prefer Luxardo Maraschino cherries because they’re some of the tastiest and highest quality cherries on the market.

Tasting Notes

Our version of The Cherry Blossom features aromas of gin and sweet cherry and has a predominantly sweet taste that combines a unique forefront of sake followed by a strong cherry note, all chased down with an array of gin botanicals and more of the sweet fruit taste.

Our Opinion of This Cocktail Recipe: Although we both agreed that its sweetness was a little overbearing, Kendall definitely enjoyed this take on the blossoming springtime flower and would make it again; meanwhile, Alex respected it for its inspiration but found it to be a little 𝘵𝘰𝘰 sweet for his palate.

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Which of our palates is yours most like?
Find out if your palate is most similar to Alex’s or Kendall’s by answering five questions.

Take Our Quiz →

Alex’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐
“When we made Jay’s and Leah’s original recipe, we found the cherry flavor to be pretty overwhelming because it contained a full ounce of their chosen cherry liqueur. We went with Luxardo but dialed it back, and to make up for the sweetness we lost (and to closer mimic the color of their original), we upped the grenadine instead. The result was pretty tasty, and although it was still very cherry-forward and a little too sweet for my palate, I felt its name was fitting.”

Kendall’s Take: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
“I cannot imagine an ode to cherries in cocktail form being more tasty than this recipe! The cherry flavor is front and center, which may make The Cherry Blossom a touch too sweet for the discerning drinker, but it does still manage to maintain an air of sophistication that many sweet cherry drinks don’t. I also really liked that it used sake as its base to stay true to the theme. I can see this being a popular drink among the ladies at a local bar during the springtime, for sure.”

Recipe

This cocktail recipe was adapted from Gastronom Cocktails, a blog by Jay and Leah Hall.

AuthorGastronom BlogPrep Time5 minsRating

Ingredients
 1 ½ oz Sake
 1 oz Maraschino Liqueur
 ½ oz Gin
 ½ oz Grenadine
 ¼ oz Triple Sec
  oz Lemon Juice
 1 Cherry

Method
1

Add sake, maraschino liqueur, gin, triple sec, grenadine, lemon juice, and ice to a mixing glass.

2

Stir for 30-45 seconds.

3

Strain into a cocktail glass.

4

Garnish with cherry.

Ingredients

Ingredients
 1 ½ oz Sake
 1 oz Maraschino Liqueur
 ½ oz Gin
 ½ oz Grenadine
 ¼ oz Triple Sec
  oz Lemon Juice
 1 Cherry

Directions

Method
1

Add sake, maraschino liqueur, gin, triple sec, grenadine, lemon juice, and ice to a mixing glass.

2

Stir for 30-45 seconds.

3

Strain into a cocktail glass.

4

Garnish with cherry.

The Cherry Blossom

Make It a Mocktail: Use Gekkeikan Alcohol Free Daiginjo Sake in place of the sake, cherry syrup in place of the liqueur, Lyre’s Non-Alcoholic Dry London Spirit in place of the gin, and Lyre’s Non-Alcoholic Orange Sec in place of the triple sec to try a booze-free version of this drink.

Tools & Glassware We Recommend

More Spring Cocktails

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

Wild Rose Cocktail Recipe

Wild Rose: A tequila and dry sparkling wine cocktail made with pineapple gum syrup, maraschino liqueur, Angostura aromatic bitters, and a orange twist

Tequila Honeysuckle Cocktail Recipe

Tequila Honeysuckle: A tequila cocktail made with honey syrup, lime juice, and a lime slice

Mountaintop Meadow Cocktail Recipe

Mountaintop Meadow: A vodka cocktail made with elderflower liqueur, simple syrup, lavender bitters, dry sparkling wine, a pineapple wedge, and mint

The Parasol Cocktail Recipe

The Parasol: A sparkling wine cocktail made with lemon juice, Lillet Blanc, elderflower liqueur, honey syrup, and a lemon twist

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