• Jarnard Sutton

Behind the Stick with Sean Foley of Mister A's


Sean Foley, lead bartender at Mister A's, is creating some unique cocktails utilizing Japanese whisky and home-made ingredients such as blackberry jam. In this edition of Behind the Stick, he shows us how to make this refreshing whiskey-based cocktail called The Bramble On.

The Bramble On

$15

1.50 oz Suntory Whisky Toki

.75 oz lemon juice

.75 oz simple syrup

House-made blackberry jam

10 muddled mint leaves

Garnished with mint sprig

What's the story behind The Bramble On?

The story behind the bramble on is simple. It's a combination of things I love: music and whiskey. Also I can safely say we all love Led Zeppelin so the name was easy.

When choosing your liquor, why did you go with a Japanese whisky?

I had a big challenge trying to use the Suntory whisky. My original ideas on how I wanted use it weren't working. But once I decided to combine it with the house-made blackberry jam and mint everything just fell into place.

What's the key component of this drink?

Key components of the drink are how the blackberry jam encompasses the whiskey with just a hint of mint. Very refreshing and perfect for the summer. Our customers have made it a must have when you visit us.

If you had to pair this cocktail with a dish, what would you pair it with?

If I had to pair this with something on our menu, I would say shrimp cocktail, or our tartar.

Sean Foley shows us how to make his refreshing Japanese cocktail called The Bramble On.

What kind of experience can guests get at Mister A's?

When you visit Mister A's you can expect to feel comfortable and welcome. We all love our work, and many of us have worked together for along time. We're like family and we want you to feel the same.

About Sean Foley

Are you from San Diego?

I'm originally from Gloucester, Massachusetts. I moved to San Diego about 10 years ago.

How did you get into bartending?

My father introduced me to bartending when I was in my early 20's.

What's your favorite thing about bartending?

I fell in love with how I was able to showcase my strengths, namely using my personality and my work ethic.

What's currently your favorite cocktail on the Mister A’s menu?

One of my favorite drinks on our menu (besides The Bramble On) is The Herbivore. It's made with house-made hibiscus and lemongrass tonic, Cynar and Sip Smith London gin. It's a more modern gin and tonic.

What's your favorite spirit?

It's hard to say what my favorite sprit is … it's like music, I go through phases. Right now, I'm a big mezcal fan. But single malts and Amaro’s are always on my mind.

Define 'the perfect cocktail.'

The perfect drink is easy: Negroni. And if you're feeling crafty, replace the gin for mezcal.

If you're going out for a cocktail, what are your favorite spots in San Diego?

When I go out my favorites are Turf Club, Starlight, Polite Provisions and ... too many more to list.

What do you love about the cocktail scene in San Diego?

The cocktail scene is amazing. So many talented and creative minds at work. I feel so lucky to live here.

What do you do in your spare time when you're not creating cocktails?

When I'm not working, I train Brazilian Jiu Jitsu at The Arena. I'm a purple belt under Barret Yoshida. Exercise is super important — it helps reset your brain after having to deliver an all-star performance night after night.

Mister A's

2550 Fifth Ave., Bankers Hill. (619) 239-1377 or arestaurant.com

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