For lunch yesterday, my friend and I checked out Long Provincial, the new restaurant from the people behind Tamarind Tree. I had the okra lemongrass satay and the grilled shrimp mousse on sugarcane over rice noodles. They were both very good, but what really caught my attention was Long Provincial’s salted lime soda. Known as soda chanh muối in Vietnam, this drink is nothing like the green, syrupy sweet lime sodas you may be used to. Instead, this soda is crystal clear and has big chunks of yellow-orange salted limes floating around in it. Although it has some sweet and tart notes, the dominant flavor is salty. If you don’t like salty drinks, you’d be better off trying something else. There was also some other really funky flavor in there that I couldn’t place. Rotten fruit? Soap, perhaps? Whatever it was, it was strange and really addictive. I couldn’t stop muddling the limes with my straw long after the soda was gone, hoping for one last drop of salted lime goodness. Of course, my friend and I immediately started discussing which kinds of booze would work best in this drink. Gin would be good, but we thought it would go most wonderfully with tequila (mmm…salty lime and tequila.) Turns out, with a bit of foresight and planning, soda chanh muối can be made pretty easily at home using some very basic ingredients. Once the weather warms up, I will certainly be giving this recipe a try (perhaps mixing it with some of that Lunazul tequila I just bought!)

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