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Cocktail Corner: Ambhar Tequila and The Pritchard

I Ate Oklahoma is brought to you in part by:

Usually I try to downplay it, because nobody likes a braggart, but my life is pretty much a non-stop magical unicorn ride through the Fields of Deliciousness.

But even I was a bit taken aback when a representative from Ambhar Tequila asked if I would take some booze off their hands and maybe make some delicious cocktails with it.

Here’s the thing, though: I don’t know how to make cocktails. And I felt like my initial recipe wasn’t up to snuff.

Greg’s Party Time Ambhar Cocktail

1. Mix 3 oz. Ambhar Plata tequila in stomach

2. RAGE!!!!!

So I turned to some of the finest booze-ologists I know at one of my favorite metro-area restaurants for help. Thankfully, chef Shelby Sieg and bar master (he does so much more than tend) Jake New Moon of The Pritchard acquiesced.

“I would literally do almost anything to get you to stop crying,” Sieg didn’t say, but we all knew she was thinking it.

First, we did a little tasting.

Plata is the youngest of the bunch, made from blue agave and mellowed in stainless steel tanks for up to two months.

It’s smoother than I ever thought tequila could be with a smoky sweetness to it and a subtle vegetal flavor. You could shoot it. You could sip it. You could dab it behind your ears and see if it’s an effective cologne.

Jake decided to lean into the veggie flavors for the first cocktail:

Sage Sour

1.5 oz Ambhar Plata

.75 oz lemon juice

.75 oz Agave nectar

5-7 sage leaves

1. Combine all ingredients in shaker

2. Double strain into coupe glass

3. Add sage leaf garnish

Reposado goes the extra step of resting the tequila in whiskey oak barrels, imbuing it with a golden tint and adding some roasty, toasty notes.

This one is silky smooth and pulls a neat trick: the initial alcohol burn presents itself briefly then fades away to nothing. Ambhar said it’s a fun substitute in cocktails for a light rum, which New Moon took to heart. Literally, he paired it with El Corazon, a blend of passion fruit, blood orange and pomegranate.

Tookie-Tookie

1.5 oz Ambhar Reposado

.5 oz Campari

.5 oz simple syrup

1 oz El Corazon (tropical mix of pomegranate, blood orange, and passion fruit juices)

Lime garnish

1. Combine first four ingredients in shaker

2. Strain into Collins glass over ice

3. Add lime wheel garnish

Anejo is aged for up to two years in whiskey oak barrels, which accounts for its richer amber color and deeper smoky flavors. The burn is back, which makes it much more ideal for sipping than shooting, but you live your life however you want, hoss.

Jake decided to use the whiskey barrels as an inspiration and used the Anejo as part of a riff on a Whiskey Smash.

Aztec Smash

2 oz Ambhar Anejo

.75 Turbinado simple syrup

.5 peach purée

3 lemon wedges

Handful mint leaves

1. Combine all ingredients in shaker

2. Double strain into rocks glass over ice

3. Add mint sprig garnish

Full disclosure: I lobbied hard to name this cocktail Ooooooh Girrrrrrrrl because that's what I said when I drank it. And in my heart, it will always be the Ooooooh Girrrrrrrrl. But if you order it at The Pritchard (which I highly suggest you do), go ahead and call it the Aztec Smash.

Huge thanks to Jake, Shelby and the folks at Ambhar Tequila for making this post possible. Now drink up!

About the Author

Founder and Eater-in-Chief of I Ate Oklahoma, Greg Elwell has been reviewing restaurants and writing about Oklahoma’s food culture for more than a decade. Where a normal person orders one meal, this guy gets three. He is almost certainly going to die young and those who love him most are fairly ambivalent about it. You can email Greg at greg@iateoklahoma.com.

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