Wednesday, September 21, 2011

learning to tie

1 1/4 oz Cachaça (Seleta)
1/2 oz Absinthe (Kübler)
1 oz Orgeat (BG Reynolds/Trader Tiki)
1 oz Orange Juice
1/2 tsp Campari

Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange twist.

My nightcap after the Celery Bowl was the Learning to Tie from the Cocktail Collective book. The drink was created by David Shenaut from the Teardrop Lounge in Portland, Oregon; I got to meet David this year at Tales of the Cocktail. My first exposure to his mixology was through the Ephemeral that morphed into the Means of Preservation here in Boston. In researching the Learning to Tie, I was able to locate an interview that gave the genesis of the drink's name. Shenaut explained, "when [my daughter] was 5 years old, I was working on making a cocktail with flavors that I knew would work, but everyone else thought would not. I worked on it every day, with variations on ingredients and measurements during the same time I was teaching my daughter to tie her own shoes. The day she tied her shoes for the first time, I went to work and picked a recipe and said that it would be the Learning To Tie cocktail. I always told that story whenever I sold the drink." Indeed, when I saw the ingredients, I was unsure of how it would turn out, but I had faith in his other recipes enough to give this one a go.
The Learning to Tie presented a lot of orange aromas from the twist's oil and the juice, and the orange notes continued into the sip. The swallow was a bit more complex; it started with the cachaça's grassiness, followed by the spirit's funkiness which paired with the orgeat, and lastly the absinthe. Over time, the Campari notes became apparent and complemented the Kübler absinthe. While orange juice can often mute flavors in drinks, here it functioned to hold the motley collection of ingredients together into a cohesive cocktail.

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