By Alison Bailin Batz
Photo by Jenelle Bonifield
Newly opened in October, Across the Pond is a 35-seat bar from the team behind Clever Koi. The cheeky, modern locale is located just across the walkway – or “pond” – from Clever Koi, in fact. Across the Pond offers traditional Japanese sushi, imported Japanese whiskies, beer, wine and a menu of 10 ever-changing craft cocktails as well as 10 classic cocktails from Clever Koi.
And while all worth a taste, Across the Pond’s Berry White ($12) is a can’t-miss offering.
“It starts with Momokawa Nigori Sake, unfiltered sake from Oregon that was the first ever to be certified organic. It boasts a rich, creamy taste with distinct tropical and citrus notes,” says Joshua James, both the co-founder of Across the Pond and the reigning Arizona Cocktail Weekend Last Slinger Standing bartending champion.
He then adds Giffard Orgeat, almond-flavored syrup, for some sweetness.
“Next is the Jelinek Amaro, an aperitif from the Czech Republic that has a hefty dose of bitterness,” James says. “But here is the kicker: we sous vide the Amaro with raspberries, blueberries and blackberries, adding balance and depth without artificial sweetness.”
Finally, James adds lime and yuzu juices – both enhancing the tropical notes of the sake – and shakes then strains the mixture into a footed goblet with crushed ice, garnishing with mint and a dehydrated lime.
“It’s almost like a Tiki cocktail in that it is spirit-forward and meant to dilute as the ice melts,” James explains. “By the time you’re done, you’ve got bright tropical and berry coming through, making you want number two.”
Across the Pond, located at 4236 N. Central Ave., Phoenix; 602.296.5629; www.acrossthepondphx.com.