Celebrate good times, Boozers. June is a month often jam-packed with family celebrations — graduations, weddings, anniversaries — and the parties can seem non-stop. We don’t mind, as we enjoy a good reunion, and the options for tasty beverages tend to explode as early summer produce starts to hit the streets. A charming little piece of fruit called a champagne mango made its way into our bar recently and it just seemed to cry out for some special treatment. Hence, the Celebration Shot.
There’s nothing more fun than toasting good times with a brimming shot glass, but slugging down straight whiskey or tequila in the warm June sunshine seems like a family brawl just waiting to happen. We chose instead to temper such firewater with seasonal flavors that also create a nice palate cleanser for barbecued ribs and Grandma’s famous potato salad. So treat the relatives to a special toast of good times and remember that today’s not the day to remind your brother-in-law that he still owes you fifty bucks. Alla famiglia!
The trick to making this shot refreshing is to pour some of the whiskey-mint infusion into the bottom of the shot glasses and then place them in the freezer for about 30 minutes — just long enough to make it very cold and create a light frost across the surface. Once you add the mango-tequila mixture on top, it will melt the frost so that it can all be swallowed down quickly, or even sipped. The recipe below should yield about 4 shots.
1/2 cup white or clear unaged whiskey (we like Catoctin Creek Mosby’s Spirit)
1/2 cup packed clean fresh mint leaves
scant teaspoon light agave nectar
2 mangos, peeled and cut into chunks (yes, you can use defrosted frozen mango if you can’t find fresh)
1/2 cup silver tequila
Place the whiskey, mint leaves, and agave nectar in a blender and blend on high until the leaves are completely broken down and the liquid is a fresh green color. Set aside. Then place the mango chunks and tequila in a clean blender and blend on high until liquefied. Pour through a strainer to remove any chunks and set aside.
To assemble the shot: put about 1 ounce of the whiskey-mint infusion in the bottom of a shot glass and put in the freezer for 30 minutes. Then add 1.5 ounces of the mango-tequila infusion on top and drink up.