When a talented bartender like Darlin Kulla works side by side with a world-class kitchen staff, delicious things happen—like this cocktail, made with a blackberry sauce from the dessert menu at Succotash in D.C. “I find that the sweetness of the berries is a great pairing for the mint in the julep,” Kulla says. “We use champagne to brighten the cocktail and add an extra layer of fun.”
Mint Julep Month: Sparkleberry Mint Julep
Tart up your julep with a splash of blackberry sauce and a squeeze of lemon
Photo: Peter Frank Edwards
for the cocktail
1½ oz. Maker's Mark® bourbon
1 tbsp. blackberry sauce (see recipe below)
¼ oz. lemon juice
½ oz. demerara sugar
Splash Champagne or other dry sparkling wine
10 mint leaves
For Blackberry Sauce (yield enough for 4 drinks)
3 pints blackberries
½ cup sugar
½ cup maple syrup
Juice of 2 lemons
For the Cocktail:
Muddle bourbon, blackberry sauce, lemon juice, and demerara sugar. Swizzle with crushed ice. Top with a splash of Champagne. Top with more pebble ice, forming a nice dome. Garnish with blackberries and a mint sprig.
For the Blackberry Sauce:
Mix all ingredients until smooth.
Meet the bartender
Recipe from Darlin Kulla of Succotash in Washington, D.C.