Sonja Lilljeberg – Bourbon Smash

On January 25, 2014 by Paul

The problem with some of the places where I shoot is they can be rather dark. I have a pretty minimalist lighting rig that helps make the shot look better but at times it can make the subject look like Fiona Apple in the Criminal video. Again, as is the case with most of the bartenders in this series, Sonja was a trooper in going with the flow. Sitting outside in the nice summer afternoon sun for her interview was better for both of us. By the way, that outdoor area is one of my favorite in the city.

In the city of Chicago, looks can sometimes be deceiving. A hole-in-the wall joint can have some of the best food in the city. A flashy, multi-million dollar nightclub can be a major disappointment that draws no crowds.

From the outside, Ada St. looks like like any of the other industrial buildings on the street. Walk inside, however, and it is like walking into another world. They designed the space well with various rooms for dining and drinking but the outdoor area is just gorgeous and perfect for dining on summer nights.

Recently, the restaurant revamped their cocktail menu, taking it from 12-14 cocktails to a total of 40. The cocktails now cover many different liquors and is designed to be both approachable and give something for every taste.

In today’s Behind the Stick, bartender Sonja Lilljeberg prepares a simple but delicious Bourbon Smash. The mint and rosemary provide a nice herbal note to the lemon and bourbon resulting in a truly refreshing drink for the summer.

Bourbon Smash
2 wedges lemon
1 spring rosemary
0.5 ounce simple syrup
2 ounces Buffalo Trace Bourbon
6 mint leaves
Muddle the lemon and rosemary in a shaker tin. Add the remaining ingredients. Add ice and shake. Strain into a ice-filled rocks glass. Garnish with a lemon wheel and a spring of rosemary.

Sonja Lilljeberg (Ada St.) – Bourbon Smash from Chicago Cocktail Chronicles on Vimeo.

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