Sunday, April 21, 2024


2 oz Rye Whiskey (Old Overholt 86°)
1/2 oz Bonal Gentiane-Quina
1/2 oz Cocchi Sweet Vermouth
2 dash Angostura Bitters
1 Orange Peel

Express the orange peel into a mixing glass and drop in, add the rest of the ingredients and ice, stir, and strain into a coupe.
Two Sundays ago, I returned to a set of online recipe flashcards for Raines Law Room in New York City and landed on the Greenwood. As a Manhattan variation with a split of vermouth and quinquina, it reminded me of the Aime from Louis' Mixed Drinks from 1906 and perhaps California Gold's Bicycle Thief with Cynar in the mix at the Blue Room. Once stirred and strained, the Greenwood showcased a grape, plum, and rye aroma. Next, grape with a hint of dark fruit on the sip transitioned into rye, plum, and allspice flavors on the swallow with orange and clove notes on the finish.

Saturday, April 20, 2024

pedantic revisited

1 oz Pierre Ferrand 1840 Cognac (Monnet VSOP)
1 oz Brugal Añejo Rum (Don Q Gran Añejo)
1 oz Cocchi Americano
1/4 oz Luxardo Maraschino
2 peel Lemon

Express the lemon peels into the mixing glass and drop in, add the rest of the ingredients and ice, stir, strain into a coupe, and garnish with a cherry.
Two Saturdays ago, I returned to the online recipe flashcard set from the Patterson House in Nashville and was tempted by the Pedantic Revisited. Overall, it read like a rum-Cognac Martinez of sorts with Cocchi Americano as the aromatized wine, and the feel reminded me of the Genever-Old Tom gin Precursor that I had a few weeks prior. In the glass, the Pedantic Revisited opened up with a Cognac and nutty cherry bouquet. Next, orchard fruit and caramel notes on the sip flowed into Cognac, rum, and cherry flavors on the swallow.

Friday, April 19, 2024

smooth operator

2 oz Mount Gay Black Barrel Rum (R.L. Seale 10 Year)
1/2 oz Amaro Ramazzotti
1/2 oz Oloroso Sherry (Lustau)
Stir with ice, strain into a coupe glass, garnish with a cherry at the bottom of the glass, and gently sink 1/4 oz Benedictine.
After finding the That'll Take the Edge Off on KindredCocktails that was sourced from the Be Your Own Bartender book by Carey Jones and John McCarthy, I ordered a copy. When I finally opened up the book, I landed on the authors' Smooth Operator in the rum section that seemed like a great start. With rum, sherry, and Ramazzotti, it reminded me of the East India Trading Co. and the structure plus the sherry and Benedictine aspects made me think of the Neutral Ground. Once mixed, the Smooth Operator launched with a nutty, rum, and root beer aroma. Next, a semi-dry grape and caramel sip yielded a rum, nutty, caramel, and root beer swallow. Moreover, as I got down a little over half way, the Benedictine began getting into the picture, and the balance shifted to smoother, sweeter, and more herbal.

Thursday, April 18, 2024


1/2 oz Hine Cognac (Monnet VSOP)
1/2 oz Roger Groult Calvados (Morin Selection)
1/2 oz Blume Marillen Apricot Eau de Vie (Shalakh Armenian Apricot Eau de Vie)
1/2 oz Cynar
1 oz Cocchi Sweet Vermouth

Stir with ice, strain into a double old fashioned glass with a large ice cube, and garnish with an orange twist.
Two Thursdays ago, I found another online recipe flashcard set from Death & Co., and I selected the Bayonet from their Fall 2021 menu; Yelp helped me to identify the location as Death & Co.'s Denver branch. I was curious as whether the Bayonet was more a three-brandy Little Italy of sorts or whether it was more akin to a Negroni in structure with the two aged brandies as the spirit component and the Cynar-apricot eau de vie acting as the bittering agent. Moreover, I was drawn in further for apricot liqueur and Cynar have been magical together ever since I first tried them in the One One Thousand at Brick & Mortar. Once affixed, the Bayonet charged to the senses with an orange and apricot aroma. Next, grape and caramel notes on the sip were attacked by Cognac, apple, apricot, and herbal flavors on the swallow.

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

more irish than catholic

1 1/2 oz Dubliner Irish Whiskey (Jameson)
3/4 oz Amaro Ramazzotti
3/4 oz Dolin Blanc Vermouth
1/4 oz St. George Pear Brandy (Rothman & Winter Orchard Pear) (*)
1 dash Orange Bitters (Angostura Orange)
1 dash Peychaud's Bitters

Stir with ice, strain into a coupe glass, and garnish with an orange twist.
(*) This is most likely St. George's pear eau de vie and not their spiced pear liqueur. Rothman & Winter Pear Liqueur contains a pear eau de vie at its base and was my closest match.
Two Thursdays ago, I ventured back to the set of online recipe flashcards for The Violet Hour in Chicago. From their Spring 2022 menu, I selected the More Irish Than Catholic especially since my bottle of Amaro Ramazzotti was still in the front of the shelf from making the Imagine Sisyphus Happy the night before; the bar put this drink on their Instagram in May 2022. Once stirred and strained, the More Irish Than Catholic showcased an orange and root beer bouquet. Next, a caramel-driven sip flowed into whiskey, root beer, pear, orange, and anise flavors on the swallow.

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

imagine sisyphus happy

1 oz Plantation 5 Year Barbados Rum (R.L. Seale 10 Year)
1 oz Amaro Ramazzotti
1 oz Bonal Gentiane-Quina
3/8 oz Vanilla Syrup
3/8 oz Demerara Syrup
4 drop Absinthe (St. George)
1 dash Fee's Old Fashioned Bitters (Fee's Whiskey Barrel-Aged)
1 Whole Egg

Shake one round without ice and one round with ice, strain into a rocks glass, and garnish with freshly grated nutmeg.
Two Tuesdays ago, I returned to the set of online recipe flashcards for the Patterson House in Nashville, and there I selected the Imagine Sisyphus Happy from their Winter 2022 menu. This Flip with rum, Bonal, amaro, and egg reminded me of the Notorious F.L.I.P. that I had years ago with Smith & Cross and Nardini. The name was taken from the end of Albert Camus' The Myth of Sisyphus where Camus wrote, "The struggle itself toward the heights is enough to fill a man's heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy." In the glass, the Imagine Sisyphus Happy proffered a woody spice and root beer aroma. Next, a creamy caramel and grape sip rolled back into rum, vanilla, root beer, and cinnamon flavors on the swallow.

Monday, April 15, 2024

negroni negroni

1 oz Negroni (equal parts Hayman's London Dry Gin, Cocchi Sweet Vermouth, and Campari)
1 oz Cocchi Sweet Vermouth
1 oz Campari

Stir with ice, strain into an old fashioned glass with a large ice cube, and garnish with an orange twist. Making this with 1 1/3 oz Campari, 1 1/3 oz sweet vermouth, and 1/3 oz gin would work... but then it wouldn't be equal parts, I guess?
Two Mondays ago, Andrea and I headed down to Puritan Oyster Bar where director of operations Jared Sadoian and beverage director Doug Brickel were offering up a "Dumb Delicious" menu subtitled "Buy one drink! Get that drink!" At first I thought it was an April Fools' Day pop-up, but it turns out to be the first of a series of a bartender takeover series. Amongst the quirky and pun-ful drinks on the menu, I selected the Negroni Negroni. I asked Jared if it was a Negroni made with one part Negroni instead of gin. Jared nodded, and explained that "You can keep the process going, and make a Negroni with this combination." To which I replied, "Like a homeopathic Negroni that approaches a Milano-Torino?" Only a few weeks ago, a guest at my bar requested a Milano-Torino. After I delivered the drink, she asked if I had ever had one, and I replied that I have had Americanos, Negroni Sbagliatos, and Negronis of all sorts but not that classic. And while this one approached that two parter, it still was disqualified by 1/9th part gin. The drink served to me with equal parts Campari, vermouth, and batched Negroni offered up an orange and cherry-grape aroma. Next, a plum-grape sip flowed into dark grape and bitter orange flavors with a hint of juniper on the swallow.

Sunday, April 14, 2024

return of the king

2 oz Single Grain Scotch or Bourbon (Famous Grouse Black)
1/2 oz Punt e Mes
1/2 oz Pasubio Vino Amaro

Stir with ice, strain into a cocktail coupe, and garnish with a lemon twist.
In searching for another use of my bottle of Pasubio, I went to the website of Haus Alpenz that imports the product. There in the eight recipes for this amaro was the Return of the King by John Filby at Augustine in Manhattan sometime between the product's launch in 2017 and the bar closing in 2020. Its format reminded me of the Red Hook and Green Point, and I opted for the Scotch option over Bourbon for I felt that it would coax out more of the smoky alpine notes from the Pasubio. Once prepared, the Return of the King displayed a lemon, blueberry, and hint of smoke bouquet. Next, grape and berry notes on the sip were vanquished by Scotch and bitter blueberry flavors on the swallow.

Saturday, April 13, 2024

devil's bargain

1 1/2 oz Denizen Vatted Dark Rum (1 1/4 oz Hamilton's Demerara 86° + 1/4 oz Rhum JM 100°)
1/2 oz Amaro Montenegro
1/2 oz Grenadine
1/2 oz Lemon Juice

Shake with ice, strain into a coupe glass, and garnish with a lemon wheel.
Two Saturdays ago, I returned to the online set of recipe flashcards for Raines Law Room in Manhattan, and I came across the Rum Sour curiously named the Devil's Bargain from early 2021. The bar's Instagram mentioned that they would do this as a Hot Toddy as well as a cold drink. Since I had never tried the combination of Montenegro and grenadine before, I gave this one a whirl. In the glass, the Devil's Bargain anted up with a lemon, berry, caramel, and grassy aroma. Next, a lemon, caramel, and berry sip gave way to woody rum, grassy funk, pomegranate, and clementine flavors on the swallow.