The Polson (MT) Main Street Flathead Cherry Festival was last weekend, and that means the early crop of Flathead cherries are in. Hot damn.
A friend of ours spends about half the year in Bigfork, on the eastern shore of Flathead Lake, and just north of one of the most fascinating cherry growing areas in the country along the southeastern shore of the lake.
Flathead cherries are something special, and he served us this cocktail one afternoon on his balcony overlooking the bay there in Bigfork. It was a much higher-brow afternoon than we’re accustomed to, but the Cherry Bombs were damned good.
6-8 fresh sweet cherries, pitted, halved
5-6 fresh mint leaves
1/2 ounce simple syrup
1 dash orange (or Angostura) bitters
2 ounces dark rum
Garnish: Mint sprigs, lemon wheel
Option: Top with cold club soda
In your trusty cocktail shaker or a mixing glass, muddle the cherries, lemon, lime, mint leaves, simple syrup, and bitters. Stir in the rum, pour into your glass of choice, top with cold club soda if you’re going that route, then load up with ice and garnish.