C. Grace Cocktail Director Kyle Erkes Shares How to Make a Strawberry Daisy

Kyle Erkes, Cocktail Director at C. Grace, mixes up a refreshing summer cocktail that’s the perfect combination of sweet and tart.

courtesy C. Grace

Kyle Erkes, Cocktail Director at C. Grace

photography by Charlie Allen

“North Carolina strawberries are my favorite thing about Raleigh spring and summer. Grab a bushel when they hit the farmers market and use them to amp up an underrated classic. I’m never gonna work hard to drink at home—but this strawberry syrup is just so easy to make and works better than muddling whole berries into a drink. Combine it with some dank local gin from Durham Distillery, and you get a drink that’s bright, dry and is gonna get you where you’re going real quick.”







How to Make The Strawberry Daisy

Shake 1 1/2 ounces Conniption Navy Strength Gin, 1/2 ounce Cointreau, 3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice and 1/2 ounce Strawberry Syrup (recipe below) with ice; strain into a cocktail glass. Optional: Garnish with candied strawberries. Strawberry Syrup Recipe: Chop a few strawberries, throw them in a jar, and cover them completely with sugar. Give the jar a shake and put it in the fridge overnight. No need to measure anything, the sugar will pull juice from the strawberries, and excess sugar will settle to the bottom. Just strain out the liquid. Keep refrigerated and add it to literally anything. 

How to Make Candied Strawberries

Don’t toss out the strawberries from your syrup! They’re delicious as-is, but you can use them to make chewy candied strawberry chips. Just spread them out on a rack and dehydrate them in your oven at its lowest temperature for a few hours.