Toast California Chrome’s historic run with the ‘Golden Gait’ cocktail

How do you toast California Chrome?

Catching Chrome fever, the Sacramento-based Visit California (formerly the California Travel and Tourism Commission) asked mixologist Eric Tecosky to develop a distinctly California cocktail in honor of the first California-bred horse to win the Kentucky Derby and Preakness.

California Chrome will attempt to become the first Triple Crown winner since 1978 in Saturday’s Belmont Stakes.

Tecosky came up with the “Golden Gait” – a combination of tequila, lime, vanilla-citrus liqueur, strawberry, simple syrup and a dash of Serrano hot sauce.

The L.A.-based mixologist makes his own Serrano-basil tincture to add an extra edge. He serves the Golden Gait in a chilled “salt rinsed” martini glass, swirling a little Dirty Sue olive juice in the glass before filling. For a flourish, he garnishes his Golden Gait with a grilled orange wheel.

Traditionally, each leg of the Triple Crown has a distinctive (and regional) drink: Mint julep at the Kentucky Derby, Black-eyed Susan at the Preakness and Long Island Iced Tea at the Belmont (in honor of Belmont Park’s location). But Visit California thought California Chrome deserved a salute from his home state and is promoting it via social media.

“Living in California means breaking new ground, thinking big and making the unachievable a reality,” said Caroline Beteta, president and CEO of Visit California. “Seeing a local horse on an unprecedented journey to the Triple Crown has been truly inspiring, so we wanted to send our support in a very big way through both social media and the development of a new California-themed signature cocktail to toast this landmark achievement in horse racing.”

For more “only in California” ideas, click on

Related stories from Sacramento Bee