1. Meet Eamon and Shiraz.
Eamon Rockey, at left, is a partner at Brooklyn’s new Aska restaurant; Shiraz Noor is manager.
2. They’ve created their own energy drink.
3. Here’s how they make it.
They call it “The Red Hare.”
Step 1: Make an oleo saccharum — a syrup that forms when citrus peels are mixed with sugar and left to sit. Eamon uses grapefruit and orange peel in the oleo saccharum for the Red Hare, and lets the citrus peels sit with the sugar for 2 to 3 weeks, then strains the liquid for use. Step 2: Simmer ginseng and citrus peels in hot water — essentially making a tea. Step 3: While it’s still hot add sugar, caffeine, and taurine and dissolve those ingredients into the drink Step 4: Cool the mixture, then add gingko boloba, oleo saccharum, and a little vodka to stabilize the other ingredients. Step 5: Strain the mixture into a bottle. This it the “Red Hare” base. To make it taste a little more like a typical energy drink, mix the syrup with an alcoholic pear cider.
5. They work at Aska, a new Scandinavian restaurant in Brooklyn.
Located inside a Williamsburg art exhibition space called Kinfolk Studios, Aska is a buzzy new spot that serves some bizarre but delicious food. (Think lichen soup and chips made of pig’s blood.) It’s also a bar, and the raucous neighborhood clientele demanded Red Bull-vodkas on a regular basis.
Rockey, who has worked at high-end NYC restaurants like Eleven Madison Park and Atera, didn’t want to crack open a dozen cans of super-sweet artificial Red Bull every night. He wanted the restaurant’s drinks to match the innovative, from-the-earth quality of its food. Plus, Rockey likes a challenge — there’s not a cocktail on his menu that doesn’t involve some kind of week-long infusion or fermentation process. (One of his best cocktails combines house-made Kombucha made with pu-erh tea with aquavit and caraway syrup; it tastes like a refreshing sip of rye bread.)
So when people starting asking for Red Bull in their cocktails, Rockey and his manager Shiraz Noor decided to make their own. It will make you feel like you should wrestle tigers. Proceed with caution.