Fresh Peach Mezcal Cocktail – Enjoy the best summer has to offer with this bright, sophisticated-looking mezcal cocktail that’s perfect for a warm summer night!
When I was a kid growing up, my family had a small orchard on our property. There were plum trees, pear trees, a cherry tree, and a number of peach trees. There was even a small arbor with a grapevine growing on it.
My brother had planted the orchard as a personal project one spring, and I honestly didn’t pay it much mind for a number of years.
In the mountains of central Pennsylvania the peaches, pears, and grapes reach their peak in late August and early September. When he went away to college neither myself nor my parents had put much thought into harvesting the fruit until my grandfather was at our farm one September day.
He and I had been walking through the orchard and we noticed that a number of peaches had fallen to the ground. After examining them for a moment, he informed me in no uncertain terms that I would be a fool to let the peach harvest go to waste. That said, he picked a ripe peach off the tree, cut a juicy slice using his pocket knife, and handed it to me so I could taste what I was missing.
Now it’s worth noting that I grew up in a very Pennsylvania Dutch-influenced area where the tradition of canning is very prevalent. In fact, most of the peaches that I had eaten up to that point had been canned in some kind of sweet syrup. Little did I realize what I was missing out on…
My grandfather was my boyhood hero. He had the enthusiasm of a kid, drove a 1950’s era pickup, built little mechanical vehicles with lawnmower parts, and let us do all sorts of “dangerous” things like sit on his lap and steer the car while he worked the pedals on treacherous mountain roads.
During World War 2 he participated in the invasion of Normandy and helped liberate France. During the Battle of the Bulge he was captured by the German army and spent the next 6 months in a Nazi prison camp until it was liberated by the Russian army on their way to Berlin. I would sit and listen to his stories, completely enthralled, asking him questions along the way.
Today, every time I bite into a fresh summer peach I think of that moment in the orchard with my grandfather. I remember his stories, his larger-than-life personality, and his infectious laugh.
Today’s recipe for my Fresh Peach Mezcal Cocktail is a fitting tribute to that wonderful flavor of fresh peaches. The smokiness of the mezcal and the sweetness of the agave nectar add balance and nuance to the freshly muddled peach juice. It’s a bright and sophisticated-looking sipper that is perfect for a warm summer night on the patio listening to the buzz of the crickets.
While you’re enjoying your cocktail, take some time to remember the special people who have helped shape and guide your life. And while you’re at it, look around for something that’s right under your nose that you may have overlooked…