Monday, January 24, 2022

brooklyn holiday

1 1/2 oz Rye Whiskey (Rittenhouse Bonded)
3/4 oz Sweet Vermouth (Lacuesta Rojo)
1/2 oz Aperol
1/2 oz Lillet Blanc (Cocchi Americano)

Stir with ice, strain into a rocks glass with ice, and garnish with an orange twist.
Two Mondays ago, I cracked into my new purchase of Trevor Felch's San Francisco Cocktails and spotted the Brooklyn Holiday. The recipe was created by Tyler Groom at The Vault as a classic Brooklyn going on an European vacation. The combination of whisk(e)y, sweet vermouth, and Lillet reminded me of the Hoots Mon, and the Aperol-Lillet duo of the Unusual Negroni (or the Mercy, Mercy). Once prepared, the Brooklyn Holiday proffered an orange and grapefruit bouquet to the nose. Next, grape, orange, and apricot notes on the sip slid into rye and herbal flavors on the swallow.

Sunday, January 23, 2022

home stretch

1 oz Añejo Tequila (Cimarron Reposado)
1 oz Calvados (Morin Selection)
3/4 oz Carpano Antica Sweet Vermouth (Lacuesta Rojo)
1/4 oz Vanilla Syrup
1 dash Miracle Mile Pecan Bitters
1 drop Root Beer Extract (1 dash Bitter Queens Sarsaparilla Bitters)

Stir with ice, strain into a double old fashioned glass with an ice cube, and garnish with an orange twist.
Two Sundays ago, I returned to Death & Co.'s Welcome Home book where I spotted Jeremy Oertel's 2016 Home Stretch. The Home Stretch was a Manhattan riff that had the tequila-Calvados combination that I experienced in the Spanish Caravan and used in my Hasta Manzana a few weeks later. In the glass, the Home Stretch approached the nose with an orange, apple, and vanilla aroma. Next, grape and apple notes on the sip flowed into vegetal, apple, and root beer flavors on the swallow with a vanilla and pecan finish.

Saturday, January 22, 2022

we are the dead

1 oz White Rum (Privateer Tres Aromatique)
1 oz Smith & Cross Rum
1 oz El Dorado 5 Year Rum
1/2 oz Pineapple Rum (Plantation)
1/2 oz Velvet Falernum
3/4 oz Lime Juice
1/4 oz Grenadine
1/4 oz Pineapple Syrup
2 dash Angostura Bitters
2 dash Absinthe (20 drop St. George)

Shake with ice, strain into a tulip glass or Tiki mug, top with crushed ice, and garnish with a mint bouquet, cherry, and cinnamon stick (cinnamon stick only).
Two Saturdays ago was David Bowie's 75th anniversary of his birth, so I was impelled to turn to Amanda Schuster's 2019 Bowie cocktail retrospective on the Alcohol Professor that included my Life on Mars. The recipe that stood out was Cory Miller's Zombie riff at Sweet Afton in Astoria, New York, that was inspired by a song on Bowie's Diamond Dogs album called We are the Dead. Since whatever mint in my garden that was still alive was buried under around 8 inches of snow, I skipped that aspect of the garniture. The We are the Dead greeted the nose with a cinnamon and funky aged rum bouquet. Next, lime, caramel, and berry notes on the sip flowed into rum, pineapple, clove, and anise flavors on the swallow.

Friday, January 21, 2022


1 1/2 oz Tequila (2 oz Cimarron Blanco)
1/2 oz Campari
1/2 oz Cynar

Build in a rocks glass with ice, stir to mix and chill, and garnish with a lemon (orange) twist.
Two Fridays ago, I returned to A Spot at the Bar after having enjoyed the Tattletale a few nights ago. There, I latched on to the Cynarita which had the Cynar-Campari combination that I last enjoyed in the Ricky Bobby Burns, and it came across like a tequila for aquavit Smoke & Mirrors; it was also the combination that I utilized in my second iteration of the Pinball Racket with rye and mezcal. Since it was not described, I assume that this was a house original at The Everleigh. In the glass, the Cynarita curtsied with an orange, vegetal, and caramel aroma. Next, Cynar's caramel notes continued on into the sip, and the swallow proffered tequila, herbal, and bitter orange flavors.

Thursday, January 20, 2022

el minero

1 1/2 oz Añejo Tequila (Cimarron Reposado)
3/4 oz Aperol
3/4 oz Lustau Amontillado Sherry
1 tsp Combier Rose Liqueur

Stir with ice, strain into an old fashioned glass with ice, and garnish with orange oils from a twist (include the twist).

Two Thursdays ago, I was perusing the ShakeStir site's recipe database when I uncovered a tequila drink from Shannon Tebay at New York's Death & Co. in 2020 that was her tequila Negroni riff of sorts. Besides the Aperol and sherry duo reminiscent of the Oaxacan Standoff and Barracuda, it contained a hint of rose liqueur – a bottle that I bought in 2016 to make a few recipes from William Schmidt's The Flowing Bowl and has since laid fallow.
The El Minero donated an orange oil, floral rose, and fruity orange aroma on the nose. Next, a semi-dry grape and orange sip led into tequila, nutty, and bitter-sweet flavors on the swallow with a vegetal and floral finish. As the ice melted, the rose petal notes became a bit more prominent in the mix.

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

monkey business

1 1/2 oz Gin (Bombay Dry)
1 oz Sweet Vermouth (Lacuesta Rojo)
1/4 oz Crème de Banane (Tempus Fugit)
1/4 oz Fernet Branca

Stir with ice, strain into a cocktail coupe, and garnish with an orange twist.

Two Wednesdays ago, I was still thinking about the Banana Toronto that I had included in my year-end wrap up of best drinks. When I had that drink over the summer, I did wonder what the addition of banana liqueur would be like in one of my favorite Fernet Branca drinks – the Hanky Panky. Therefore, I finally decided to act on that curiosity and make one. I dubbed it after a synonym for the Hanky Panky, namely Monkey Business (despite there being a Painkiller-like drink of that name already).
The Monkey Business swung to the nose with orange, fruity, and grape aromas. Next, the vermouth's grape filled the sip, and the swallow came through with gin, banana, and herbal-minty flavors. Overall, the crème de banane mellowed out the Fernet and took the edge off of the amaro.

Tuesday, January 18, 2022


1 1/2 oz Scotch (Famous Grouse)
1/2 oz Islay Whisky (Caol Ila 12 Year)
1 bsp Honey Syrup (1/4 oz)
3 dash Angostura Bitters

Build in a rocks glass with ice, stir to mix and chill, and garnish with a lemon twist.
For a cocktail two Tuesdays ago, I ventured into Michael Madrusan and Zara Young's A Spot at the Bar book and uncovered the Tattletale. That recipe was created by Sam Ross as a boozy Old Fashioned inspired by his Penicillin but without the ginger or citrus elements. Once prepared, the Tattletale revealed a lemon and peat smoke aroma. Next, malt and honey on the sip let loose smoky Scotch, clove, and allspice flavors on the swallow with a honey finish.

Monday, January 17, 2022

at the gates of hell

2 oz 69% Multi-Island Rum (Plantation OFTD)
1/2 oz Aged Pot Still 100° Jamaican Rum (Smith & Cross)
1 1/2 oz Pineapple Juice
1/2 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Lemon Juice
1/2 oz Falernum (Velvet)
1/2 oz Blackberry Liqueur (Marie Brizard)
1/2 oz Cinnamon Syrup

Shake with crushed ice, dump into a Tiki mug or tall glass, and top with crushed ice. Garnish with mint and blackberries (omit berries).

One of the presents that Andrea recently gave me was a seahorse mug that she bought at the Boston Shaker store, and two Mondays ago, I set off to find a recipe for its maiden voyage. Thus, I selected Chad Austin's Everyone Has a F*cking Cocktail Book that I had not touched in a few months to find the answer. The drink that called out to me was his At the Gates of Hell, and I was intrigued that it called for blackberry brandy which has appeared in a few classics such as Don's Own Grog, Kamehameha Rum Punch, and Rum Runner. I had not touched that bottle of liqueur for around two and a half years when I dusted it off last to create the Rum Runner's Downfall mashup recipe.
The At the Gates of Hell proffered a blackberry and mint aroma to the nose. Next, caramel, dark berry, and lime notes on the sip waylaid into funky rum, cinnamon, and blackberry flavors on the swallow.

Sunday, January 16, 2022

word to the wise

1 oz Old Grand-Dad 114° Bourbon
1/2 oz Bonal Gentiane-Quina
1/2 oz Green Chartreuse
1/2 oz Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur
1/2 oz Lime Juice

Shake with ice, strain into a cocktail coupe, and garnish with a cherry.
Two Sundays ago, I decided to make another of the interesting recipes that I found in my search of Kindred Cocktails for Bonal drinks. This one was Ted Kilgore's Bourbon Last Word riff called Word to the Wise that he created at Taste in St. Louis, Missouri, and posted to the database in 2011. With Bonal and overproof Bourbon in the mix in place of the gin, the Word to the Wise gave forth a nutty cherry and green herbal aroma akin to the classic. Next, grape and lime notes swirled on the sip, and the swallow informed the palate of Bourbon, nutty cherry, and herbal flavors.