Food Trends: 4 Carrot Cocktails in O.C.

These spritely drinks are sprouting up all over.
Photograph courtesy of Blinking Owl Distillery

What’s more brilliant, the name of Blinking Owl Distillery’s carrot cocktail—20/21 Vision—or the cocktail itself? It’s among the new libations that helped launch food service at the lauded venue. Inspired by an aquavit tasting in Denmark, Chloe Jayne Bell’s recipe mixes the spirit with carrot syrup, lemon, aquafaba, dry vermouth, and basil. Consider it with caviar service or the creative chorizo-mini-dog blinis and caviar. “Anything with caviar would go well with it,” Bell says. 802 E. WASHINGTON AVE., SANTA ANA, 714-852-3947

Mix Mix Kitchen bar introduced its Silly Rabbit cocktail soon after the acclaimed Filipino-eclectic restaurant opened five years ago—and it’s the one drink that’s never left the list. “People come to our restaurant just for this cocktail,” chef-owner Ross Pangilinan says. The ingredients: smooth and earthy Arette reposado tequila; a carrot-and-Thai-chile syrup that has hints of clove and star anise; lime juice; and a misting of mezcal that delivers the merest whiff of smokiness. 300 N. MAIN ST., SANTA ANA, 714-836-5158

One sip of the Defender, a brunch cocktail at Outpost Kitchen near South Coast Plaza, and you know it’s boosting your body’s defenses: The primary ingredient is a cold-pressed juice made from carrot, orange, lemon, ginger, and cayenne, also sold by the bottle. Add tequila, agave, and rooster spice and it’s a magical matchup with the smoked salmon Benedict. The carrot-beet kanji in the deep purple mezcal-Cointreau-sherry Chika Chika Boom! is rich in probiotics and antioxidants. 3420 BRISTOL ST., COSTA MESA, 714-852-3044

Down the Wabbit Hole—made with vodka, carrot juice, ginger, soda, and a celery-salt rim—is among the top sellers at Scarlet Kitchen and Lounge; it also proved a popular batched cocktail to go when the pandemic struck. Bar manager Jackie Pember envisions it as “super refreshing, super summery,” and offers it from spring through early fall. Enjoy it with Scarlet’s farm salad … or the pulled-carrot tacos. 30865 GATEWAY PLACE, RANCHO MISSION VIEJO, 949-503-3086

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