This cocktail cherry recipe will take you about 15 minutes … and I promise you’ll like them better than those radioactive-looking “maraschino” cherries most bars and grocery stores stock. (I gave maraschino the sarcastic quotation mark treatment because the neon-red ones that are most common don’t even use maraschino liqueur or Marasca cherries, just a lot of sugar.)
Aside from garnishing cocktails like Manhattans with these, you can also use them as a dessert topping or just snack on them plain. I used Wild Turkey American Honey liqueur, but you could also do a mixture of 3 parts bourbon to 1 part honey. Since I was going for a sweet treat, I used Bing cherries. However, if you want a more traditional style of cocktail cherry, use sour cherries. Rainier cherries could be interesting, too. Try it and let us know how it is!
1 cup American Honey liqueur (or ¾ cup bourbon + ¼ cup honey)
1 pint Bing cherries, stemmed and pitted
Simmer liqueur in a small pan for five minutes, then add the cherries and reduce heat. Cook for an additional five minutes then remove from heat and let it cool. Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator for two days before use.