Photo Credit: Madelynne Ross/Black Restaurant Week, LLC

Festival at the Lake

A refreshing, flavorful parade of sweet, earthy spice that will keep you coming back for more. This peach-basil spiced tea is spiked with Maker’s Mark® infused with red fresno chilli peppers to create a subtle, “sweet heat” as pleasant as a late-summer breeze.

Glassware: Collins glass filled 1/3 with crushed ice

  • .5 oz fresh lemon juice
  • 1 oz of ginger beer (Bundaberg)
  • 1.5 oz of spiced tea [(I prefer to use Kava Stress Relief Tea by Yogi, or you can use Trader Joe’s Spiced Chai tea. 1 bag steeped for 20 minutes and cooled, regardless of the tea used]
  • 1.5 oz homemade peach-basil syrup
  • 1.5 oz red jalapeño-infused Maker’s Mark
  • 2 dashes of Angostura bitters

Build the drink in the order above in a Collins glass filled 1/3 with crushed ice

Lightly stir the partially-filled glass with a barspoon to ensure the liquid contents are properly mixed

Top the drink off with more crushed ice

Cover the fresh crushed ice with more Angostura bitters on top

Peach-Basil Syrup

1. Thinly slice 1 peach into 16 slices and place it in a big, deep bowl with an equal ratio of organic white cane sugar.

2. Add .25 oz of liquid honey and carefully mix everything without breaking apart the peach slices. Make sure every inch of every slice is completely covered in sugar.

3. Let this mixture sit in the bowl for 5 hours, lightly stirring the peaches once an hour to keep the slices covered in sugar.

4. Lightly muddle 12 fresh basil leaves inside of a mason jar to release the oils and aromatics in the leaves . Carefully pour all of the contents of the bowl into the mason jar with the muddled basil

5. Close the jar and lightly shake the jar for 2 minutes, or until the basil leaves are completely soggy. Taste test to ensure that the syrup now has notes of basil.

6. Pour the completed syrup through a fine mesh strainer and squeeze the remaining soaked produce through cheesecloth to get out the remaining liquid.

7. Add .25 oz of Bragg’s apple cider vinegar to the syrup

8. The syrup is now complete. Keep refrigerated and make sure you always shake it properly before pouring)

Red Fresno Pepper Infused Maker’s Mark®

1. Thinly slice and deseed 2 red fresno peppers and place them in a mason jar

2. Lightly muddle the sliced peppers and pour 500 ml of Maker’s Mark® into the mason jar

3. Vigorously shake the mason jar for 1 minute

4. Allow the infusion to sit for 2 hours, shaking vigorously again every half hour

5. Strain liquid through fine mesh and squeeze the remaining soaked peppers through a cheesecloth to get out the remaining liquid and discard fresno chilli peppers

6. The infusion is now complete. Keep refrigerated and make sure you always shake it properly before pouring)

Garnish: Garnish with three thinly-sliced peach slices layered on top of one another and skewered on a bamboo stick. The peaches should form a mini “stairway” resting on the rim of the glass. Add a fresh sprig of basil, lightly slapping the sprig first to release the aroma. Add a reusable or compostable straw to the drink and enjoy!


Clay Coleman is a entrepreneurial Oakland native with 3 years of bartending experience. As a Californian, citrusy drinks with fresh fruits and herbs are his specialty. Clay also owns and operate a catering company for private events: Clay the Bartender. Follow him on  Instagram.

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