what: Strawberry Harvest
where: The Oak Table, 1221 Main St., 563-5066
Whether you’re eating them or smashing them into a cocktail, there’s no substitute for the flavor of a fresh strawberry. The year-round hothouse variety are never as tasty as those picked from a nearby farm during the local strawberry season that begins in mid-April and runs until June.
Oak Table head bartender Lauren Tebeau uses strawberries from Richland County’s Cottle Farms in this refreshing spring cocktail. Keeping with the local theme, she includes honey from Lexington County’s Bee Trail Farm and a sprig of mint from the restaurant’s patio garden. With a squeeze of lemon and a good shake, the cocktail is strained and topped with Charleston’s Cannonborough Beverage Company honey basil soda. Speaking of which, Oak Table is one of the few places in town where you can try Cannonborough’s naturally sweetened, preservative-free soda, which makes several appearances on the cocktail list, including the Spring Thyme and the Basil Ginger Lemonade. (Bourbon, which is now officially open, also carries Cannonborough, or you can pick up a growler of your own on Saturday mornings at Soda City Market.)
1 ¾ oz American Harvest Organic Spirit (aka, vodka.)
2 Cottle Farms strawberries
3 mint leaves
1 tsp Bee Trail Farm honey
squeeze of lemon
Muddle the strawberries, mint, honey and lemon juice. Add ice and vodka, then shake vigorously. Strain over ice in a rocks glass; top with Cannonborough honey basil soda and garnish with strawberry slice and sprig of mint.
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