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Fat-washed cocktails are showing up in Austin—here's where to find them

Written by
Anastacia Uriegas

Tired of frosé already? It's time to go a little heavier, as Austin’s hottest cocktail bars are fat-washing their latest libations for your guilty drinking pleasure.

In this city, artery-clogging habits don’t stop with BBQ. Austin’s top bartenders are adding fats to booze using a technique—borrowed from the perfume industry—known as fat-washing. The process involves infusing spirits with plant or animal fats, then freezing and removing the fatty solids; the resulting liquor has an unctuous oomph and a silky mouthfeel. Curious? Here are five fatty drinks around town to try.

All photos by Jessica Attie

1. Brisket Mary at Trace

Head to TRACE restaurant and bar at W Austin Hotel during its weekend brunch for the Brisket Mary ($12), a savory cocktail using George Dickel rye whiskey infused with fat saved from house-smoked Niman Ranch brisket. The concoction is followed with Zing Zang bloody mix and a splash of Austin Beerworks’ Pearl Snap pilsner for a truly Texan take on the OG Bloody Mary.

2. Cloak of Feathers at Kuneho

This fat-washed beauty lies somewhere between an Arnold Palmer and a michelada. Kuneho’s Cloak of Feathers ($13) is made with two coconut-oil–washed rums from Jamaica and Barbados (which coat your tongue with a mild nuttiness), aromatic five-spice powder and black-tea kombucha. It’s rounded out with maple, lime and Angostura bitters.

3. Silver Meadows at the Roosevelt Room

The Roosevelt Room’s bar team spent months perfecting the Silver Meadows’ ($15) formula. Unfiltered sake, pisco, smoky blanco tequila and St-Germain—which has been fat-washed with earthy foie gras (duck or goose)—are combined with clarified grapefruit and lime juices, agave and a sweetgrass tincture. The elegant drink arrives in a dainty crystal coupe glass garnished with baby’s breath.

4. Junior Jr. at Garage

The Junior Jr. ($16) is a play on the classic Jack Rose—John Steinbeck’s drink of choice—with brown butter fat-washed Maker’s Mark in place of applejack. Balanced with lemon juice, grenadine and apple bitters, the cocktail can be found in the aptly named GTO section of the menu (that’s Pontiac GTO, for car fanatics), where baller-status libations live.

5. I Can Tell That We're Going to Be Friends at VOX Table 

Named after a Jack White lyric, this cocktail is one we’re sure the eclectic musician would be proud of. VOX Table’s I Can Tell That We Are Going to Be Friends ($13) is a savory blend of El Silencio mescal, Altos tequila and Aviation gin, all washed with prosciutto fat, then shaken with honeydew melon, fig-balsamic shrub, lime, grapefruit and sea salt.

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