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Barrel-Aged Cherry Soda

[Photo: Kevin Liu]

If you can barrel-age cocktails, why not barrel-age a mocktail?

As it turns out, many of the flavor compounds found in bourbon are present in cherries, which is why I chose a tart cherry juice to be the base of this drink. The bourbon notes are pumped up with some 1:1 simple syrup, "barrel-aged" using a simple kit. To really knock this drink out of the park, consider smoking the syrup before use. Just don't smoke the whole drink—the flavor gets a little overwhelming.

About the author:Kevin Liu likes to drink science and study cocktails. Wait, that's backward. Ask him geeky food and booze questions on twitter @kevinkliu. While you're at it, check out his book about cocktail science.

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