Aguas frescas, those sweet, refreshing non-alcoholic drinks made from fruits, flowers and grains found throughout Mexico, are gaining in popularity north of the border, as well. As American tastes become acquainted with beverages like horchatas and licuados, those bebidas are enjoying a culinary renaissance in Chicago restaurants.
Case in point is Sabor Saveur chef/owner Yanitzin Sanchez’s version of aguas frescas. The Mexican-born, French-trained toque takes fresh fruits, vegetables, spices, flowers and grains and liquefies them to create delicious, brightly hued bebidas. Sanchez serves these aguas frescas during weekend brunch service at Sabor Saveur (Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m.-3 p.m.).
These creative concoctions range from the Beta Rouge (crafted from lettuce, peanuts, apple, piloncillo, orange juice and vibrant hot pink beets) to the horchata-inspired Eau de Riz (rice, cinnamon, almond, pineapple, mango, basil and milk). Each agua fresca is served stunningly in a martini glass or a carafe and can be mixed with your choice of BYO alcohol (rum, tequila, vodka and champagne seem to work particularly well), or enjoyed on their own. Chef Sanchez will rotate these handmade drinks often, offering a selection of five at a time. The current Sabor Saveur aguas frescas menu is detailed below.
Sabor Saveur Aguas Frescas Menu
($5 per glass, $9 half carafe, $18 carafe)
beets, lettuce, peanut, apple, piloncillo and orange juice
tamarind, chile piquin, mango, basil and lemon juice
Eau de Riz
rice, cinnamon, almond, pineapple, mango, basil and milk
Sabor Saveur Mojito
ginger, pineapple, mint and lemon juice
Tezcalate Per Vous
Pinole, achiote, cinnamon, piloncillo and milk
Weekend brunch is served Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Dinner is served Tuesday-Thursday 5-10 p.m., Friday and Saturday 5-11 p.m. and Sunday 5-9 p.m. Reservations are recommended, not required.
2013 W. Division St.
Chicago, IL 60622