Who: Carlos Gomez
Where: Santo’s Modern American Buffet and Sushi, 4690 N. State Road 7, Suite 106, Coconut Creek; 954-971-6882
What it is: A basic mojito using sake instead of rum.
What he says: “Sake is dry but not so strong,” Gomez says. “It’s a little bit sweet, so you can mix it with everything. SanTo’s is fusion. We want to mix American with Asian, introduce sake to the people to make it popular.”
Where he came from: “I’m not going to tell you all the places I’ve worked,” Gomez jokes, but he says bartending at the Hard Rock in Mexico City got him started with spirit substitutions and flavor infusions.
For fusion’s sake: Gomez uses sake as a substitute for almost every other liquor at SanTo’s. Having flavored cold sakes enables him to make lychee-sake martinis and sake margaritas, and even to flavor his classic sake mojito with fruits such as mango or peach. “Why not use the sake to introduce people to margaritas? Some people are afraid of the tequila,” he says. “We think it will be very popular. It’s the novelty of sake.”
— Maria Murriel, @mariamurriel