Washington, D.C. will soon be filled with colorful shades of pink as the iconic annual cherry blossom season returns to the city. The 2022 National Cherry Blossom Festival officially runs now through April 17, with “peak bloom” forecasted to take place between March 22-25. This year’s festival also marks the 110th anniversary of the gift of the cherry blossom trees from the Mayor of Tokyo to Washington, D.C.
Eight Hilton properties in the Washington, D.C. area are celebrating the season with special cherry blossom-inspired cocktails, the perfect way to relax and unwind after a day spent exploring the blooms around the city’s landmarks. Guests can enjoy a variety of “Petal Pours,” ranging from a Cherry Blossom Rickey to an In-Bloom Old Fashioned and more, now through April 30. If you can’t make it to the D.C. area this year, we’ve gathered five of the recipes directly from Hilton mixologists that you can make at home.
Cherry Blush from Hilton Washington DC Capitol Hill
Cherry Blush Ingredients:
- 1.5 oz Stone Cherry Whiskey
- 6 mint leaves
- 0.5 oz simple syrup
- 3 cherries
- 4 lemon quarters
- 0.5 oz grenadine
- 4 dashes of bitters
- club soda
- additional cherry for garnish
Cherry Blush Directions:
Place mint leaves, lemon quarters, cherries, simple syrup, and grenadine in a mixing glass. Muddle ingredients together. Add bitters and Stone Cherry Whiskey. Shake vigorously and pour into a tall glass with ice. Top with club soda and garnish with a cherry.
Cherry Blossom Rickey from Washington Hilton
Cherry Blossom Rickey Ingredients:
- 1.5 oz Green Hat Gin
- 0.25 oz Luxardo Maraschino Cherry Brandy
- 0.25 oz house-made cherry cordial
- squeeze of lime
- Q Club Soda
- 3 brandied cherries for garnish
Cherry Blossom Rickey Directions:
Add cold draft ice in a tall, narrow Collins glass, stacking the ice cubes on top of each other so one ice cube is sticking over the rim of the glass. In a mixing tin filled ¼ of the way with ice, add the gin, cherry brandy, and lime juice and give it a quick stir with a bar spoon. Pour over the ice and add club soda to top the glass off. Float house-made cherry cordial on top of the drink, and throw in three brandied cherries for a garnish. Once the cordial dissipates through the drink it will be the exact color of the cherry blossom trees that inspired it.
Blossom from Hilton McLean Tysons Corner
- 1.5 oz Haku Japanese Vodka
- 0.5 oz maraschino liqueur
- 0.5 oz lemon juice
- 0.25 oz crème de violette
- brandied cherry for garnish
Pour the vodka, maraschino liqueur, lemon juice and crème de violette into a glass with ice and stir, then strain into a coupe glass. Serve up with a brandied cherry.
Capital Blossom from Capital Hilton
Capital Blossom Ingredients:
- 1.5 oz Empress gin
- 1 oz lemon juice
- 1 oz sugar syrup
- slice of cucumber
- basil leaf for garnish
Capital Blossom Directions:
Combine gin, lemon juice, sugar syrup and cucumber in a cocktail shaker. Shake and strain over ice in a rocks glass. Garnish with a basil leaf.
Japanese 75 from Conrad Washington DC
Japanese 75 Ingredients:
- 0.5 oz house-made cherry blossom syrup
- 0.5 oz Nikka Coffey Gin
- 0.5 oz fresh lemon juice
- 1 bar spoon Cherry Heering liquor
- Naveran Brut Nature Cava
House-Made Cherry Blossom Syrup Ingredients:
- Tea Leaves Cherry Blossom Green Tea
- 1 cup of sugar
House-Made Cherry Blossom Syrup Directions:
Make one cup of Tea Leaves Cherry Blossom Green Tea. Combine with one cup of sugar and boil for five minutes, let cool.
Japanese 75 Directions:
Combine house-made cherry blossom syrup, gin, lemon juice and Cherry Heering liquor over ice and shake. Strain into a champagne glass. Top with cava.
In addition to the cocktails featured at the properties above, you can also find these three creative “Petal Pours” – an In-Bloom Old Fashioned at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Washington DC – Crystal City, a Cherry Colada at Embassy Suites Washington DC Convention Center and a Rock Creek Bourbon Manhattan at Hilton Crystal City at Washington Regan National Airport.
To read more about the annual blooms in Tokyo, Paris and Washingon, D.C., check out this article about experiencing cherry blossom season around the world.
Hilton Honors members who register for the Points in the City promotion and stay in popular city destinations, including Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, New York City, New Orleans, Orlando, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle or Washington, D.C. through May 1 will receive an additional 2,500 Bonus Points per stay. Also through May 1, every stay will earn you an additional 2,500 Bonus Points through the Points Unlimited promotion, so that’s an extra 5,000 Bonus Points!