Slideshow: First Look: Cocktails from Sother Teague at Bergen Hill, Brooklyn

Poppy Gibson ($12)
Poppy Gibson ($12)
This Gibson variation takes its cue from the menu’s beet-cured salmon. Given that aquavit is also used to cure the fish, Teague opted to use the caraway-flavored spirit (in this case, Aalborg) as the base of the cocktail. “You have the aquavit because the salmon is cured in it, cucumber syrup because there’s cucumber in the dish, and housemade pickled onions on top because it’s a Gibson,” he explains. The drink is mixed with Dolin dry vermouth and lemon juice, then garnished with poppy seeds. Teague says that “people have really been responding well to this one, it just goes really well with the seafood action we do.”
Meiji Collins ($10)
Meiji Collins ($10)
"The Meiji were integral in setting up laws about sake—this is our homage to them," says Teague of the Japanese family who inspired the name of this cocktail. Intended to be paired with the hamachi crudo, this riff on a classic Collins borrows the yuzu kosho from that dish and features it in a shrub that Teague describes as "bright, tart, and slightly savory." The shrub is combined with Ty-Ku junmai ginjo sake and seltzer, which Teague drizzles down into the glass along the side of a tall swizzle stick. "It's actually designed to be used this way so that the bubbles are integrated throughout the drink, all the way to the bottom of the glass," he explains. The drink is garnished with a lime wheel, shiso leaf, and a rim of togarashi sugar. "Togarashi is a typical sushi seasoning—we use in the crudo—and it has a great kind of flash heat. You feel it all of the sudden, and then just like that, it's gone."
Ecuadorian Beer ($10)
Ecuadorian Beer ($10)
Designed to be paired with the shrimp ceviche, this Michelada-style cocktail also shares ingredients with the dish from which it was inspired. “Chef gets these beautiful amaebi shrimp and makes a stock from the peels that’s used as the base for the marinade. I take that broth and make a syrup that’s used in the cocktail,” explains Teague. He then adds fresh lime and lemon juice, and a little Siembra Azul blanco tequila. “Since it’s just a low-alcohol beer cocktail, I wanted to add the tequila to fortify the drink,” he says. “For the beer we use whatever we have on hand, something light and crisp. Right now it’s the Hitachino Nest, before we had a kolsch.”
A Drink Apart ($12)
A Drink Apart ($12)
“There’s a saying that goes, ‘Once you drink Strega together, you’ll never drink it apart.’ This is a drink apart,” says Teague. Here the Italian saffron liqueur is featured alongside Beefeater London dry gin, orange juice, and a small amount of cane syrup, which Teague explains is mostly for viscosity. Before the mixture is added to the serving glass, orange oil and absinthe are sprayed inside the glass and ignited. “Aroma consists of a large portion of flavor—so the quick burn adds a delicious aroma to the drink.” The cocktail is then garnished with saffron-pickled fennel.
On Fire
On Fire
Teague preps the glass for A Drink Apart.