Sunday, September 4, 2011

charlie lindbergh

1 1/2 oz Plymouth Gin
1 1/2 oz Cocchi Americano
1 dash Regan's Orange Bitters

Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail coupe pre-rinsed with Rothman & Winter Apricot Liqueur.
Last Sunday, Andrea and I stopped by Island Creek Oyster Bar. The drink that caught my eye was the Charlie Lindbergh; the menu item's subtitle was "a modern take on the Prohibition variation" which hinted at the two rounds of alterations from the original. The drink commemorates Lindbergh's non-stop trans-Atlantic flight back in 1927, and the recipe first appears a few years later in the 1930 Savoy Cocktail Book. In the Savoy, the recipe contains gin, Lillet, apricot liqueur, orange juice, and a lemon twist. Back in 2008, the Charlie Lindbergh had been on Eastern Standard's Prohibition-era drink of the month list that led up to their epic 75th Anniversary Prohibition Repeal Party. It was also served during the cocktail-pairing dinner portion of the party. According to my notes for the event, Eastern Standard' s Jackson Cannon removed the orange juice and lemon twist and replaced these citrus elements with Bittermens grapefruit bitters. In the Island Creek iteration, bar manager Bobby McCoy explained that they switched from Lillet to Cocchi Americano and from grapefruit bitters to orange ones. I am not sure if the Eastern Standard recipe used the apricot liqueur in a rinse or as a regular ingredient, but the Island Creek version included it à la James Maloney's bellringer -- an apricot liqueur rinse which was Maloney's signature move in his 1900 drink book. Here, the Charlie Lindbergh presented an aroma of gin with hints of citrus from the Cocchi Americano and orange bitters. The citrus continued on in the sip, and this was followed by gin on the swallow and apricot on the finish. My guess is that the orange bitters work better here than classic's orange juice, but I do think that the 1930 recipe's lemon twist would work wonders here.


Andy Bochman said...

Cocktail v/s,

Thanks a lot for this. Tried one of these ... plus the Bitter Monk ... last night and both were lovely to behold and drink. Bartender Paul made ours. Per your post, he's an Eastern Standard alum too.

Andy Bochman said...
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