Black Tree, on the Lower East Side has taken the trending Pickle Back to new heights! This Orchard Street neighborhood bar is uniquely one of a kind with their locally sourced ingredients, pickling methods, and always changing menu selection.
Now, because this site likes to feature daring pairings, Cocktail Craze accepted the challenge and figured out a way to pair Chef Sandy’s menu selections with these creative pickle backs. There are seven different flavors offered and all with spirits that are local or within three hundred miles of NYC. The Beet Pickle Back with Standard Vodka was my favorite, and one, that when paired with the Duck Leg and Spiced Plum Sauce, it was fantastic. The sweet and spicy kick that the Beet Juice has makes the spice in the plum show through in the end, making the juicy duck stand out completely. I have to say, this one is definitely a sexy shot!
Next came the Heirloom Cherry Tomato and Vodka Pickle Back. This one packs quite the punch and gave the duck a nice fire flavor, where the plums were able to showcase the slightly sweeter side…very delicious!
The third pickle back was the Pickled Pear and Bar Hill Gin. This one is great on it’s own, but when tasted with the Kale Caesar Salad, it took on a whole other personality! First and foremost, this kale salad blew me away. Kale in general is slightly bitter, but when complimented with a tangy dressing, fried egg, and Olga Cheese (which is similar to Parmesan) this salad is unreal! The fried egg made the fruit in the Pickled Pear shot come through, while the kale was able to make the herbaceous gin mellow out a little. This pairing is savory and earthy, and an absolute must order.
Concord Grapes? Yes… Chef Sandy absolutely went there! This Pickle Back is so interesting and absolutely delicious when taken with the Suerte Blanco Tequila. Paired this with the Cauliflower Sandwich and it was heaven. Ok…. So maybe it was the sandwich that was the star of this pairing, but the pickled grape and tequila shot added this intense flavor to the melted cheese, that was out of this world, and absolutely addicting!
Next came the Plum, which when also paired with the sandwich was very pleasant. The colored cauliflower has a sweeter element that complimented the pickled plum shot very well. The Rough Rider Bourbon that went alongside the Pickled Plum shot was the perfect touch, and made this another sexier pairing (unless its because I was also five pickle backs deep by this one…).
Last, but certainly not the least, was the Cucumber and Green Tomato with McKenzie Pure Pot Still. This shot found its soul mate by the end of this lunch, when it paired up with the Garlic Romanesco. This side dish is to die for and one I will be going back for again very soon!
Be sure to check out Black Tree for some of these amazing remixed pickle backs. At $8.00 a pop it’s a steal considering you wont find anything like this in any of your run of the mill or regular bars. Chef Sandy’s menu is fantastic, so be sure to arrive there very hungry!