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Great Baltimore cocktails, The 3-2-1 at Silo.5%

Sometimes the better cocktails out there come not from studying the Web's vast repertoire of recipes or laying claim to bouts of inspiration.

Often they come through the organic process of seeing what works and what doesn't for a particular person's taste — resulting in something really great. And great enough for everyone to try and enjoy, which Silo.5%'s bartender Dan Lease has crafted in the 3-2-1.

Lease tells the tale of a couple who had moved into the Silo Point development who would frequent the bar and wanted to try something new: "Bourbon-based, and sweet. But not too sweet ... and strong. That was about the beginning of the process," he said.

The 3-2-1 boasts a heavy pour of Basil Hayden bourbon, along with lemon juice and lavender-lemongrass simple syrup with a mint leaf or two on top. It's aromatic, strong, sour and sweet. The lavender-lemongrass simple syrup adds a stratum of sophistication that elevates the drink as a whiskey sour-esque cocktail with — if it were possible — far more adult sophistication. The ingredients come together in a very balanced way to produce a great cocktail. The mint provides an aromatic affect that adds to every sip.

So while the 3-2-1, through trial and error, winds up being a sophisticated twist on a classic, the road traveled to get there is interesting enough and the ingredient combination is far more interesting than your typical sour mix, with the added benefit of it being house-made. It's a definite must-try.

How to make the 3-2-1

2 oz. Basil Hayden bourbon

1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice

3/4 oz. lavender-lemongrass simple syrup

Mint garnish

Chill a martini glass prior to mixing ingredients in a tumbler on ice. Shake vigorously, strain into chilled glass, garnish with bruised mint leaves.

Where to get the 3-2-1

Silo.5% Wine Bar

1200 Steuart St. Unit 2, Locust Point

443-438-4044

silo.5winebar.com

$14

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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