The Bufala Negra is a modern whisky-based cocktail, featuring a signature ingredient of aged balsamic vinegar which imparts a tart, funky element. The original version, created by Jerry Slater at H. Harper Station in Atlanta, uses balsamic syrup, a simple mixed with vinegar, basil, brown sugar, ginger beer, and Buffalo Trace. We haven’t made it over to Atlanta yet, but I really enjoyed the version over at Lüke, which is a little lighter on the ginger beer than usual, and lets the balsamic shine.
Balsamic syrup is quite quick to create, should take only 3 minutes or so to brew up a batch. For a quick tutorial check out the guide here. Using aged balsamic helps and tastes quite different. Aged Balsamic vinegars can get quite viscous, with a consistency similar to real maple syrup.
- 1.5 oz Russel’s 10 Year Bourbon
- .5 oz Balsamic Syrup
- 2 oz Ginger Beer
- 1 Brown Sugar Cube
- 4 Fresh Basil Leaves
- Make the balsamic syrup by mixing 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar with 1/4 cup of simple syrup in a pan.
- Once it’s lightly boiling, reduce heat to low and let it simmer. Once cool it’s ready for use, store any excess in the fridge for up to 1 week.
- Muddle together the basil, sugar cube, and balsamic in a mixing tin.
- Add in your ice and bourbon.
- Shake it well.
- Strain into an old fashioned glass with a large ice cube.
- Top with ginger beer.
- Garnish with a basil leaf.