Unusual Suspects: The Rise of Vegetable Cocktails

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Photo: Melissa Hom

Shaken, stirred, fried, or simply pured to a pulp, vegetables are cropping up in cocktails across our fair city. Forget measly sprigs that are little more than window dressings the new drinks put stalks, tubers, and other surprising ingredients at center stage, no matter that vegetables are less predictable and more high-maintenance than almost any other ingredient that might go into a highball. The appeal: bright hues, bold flavors, bursts of refreshment without sno-cone sweetness, and bragging rights among bartenders and mixologists. The challenges: shorter growing seasons, broader ranges in flavor, a steep learning curve, and little room for error. Besides, even the most open-minded barfly might think twice before downing anything thats spiked with celery syrup. Check out our slideshow for a few boozy veggie tales worth telling.