Wednesday, October 5, 2011

nonesuch scaffa

1 1/4 oz Laird's Bonded Apple Brandy (sub Calvados in a pinch)
1 1/4 oz Lustau East India Solera Sherry (sub a Cream Sherry)
1/4 oz Crème de Cacao (Marie Brizard)
1/8 oz Fernet Branca (1 barspoon)

Build in a small cocktail glass with no ice and stir to mix. Garnish with orange oils from a twist.

The Thursday Drink Night theme last week was one that I proposed about a month ago, namely room temperature cocktails. Back in November 2010, Mixoloseum did host a drink night with a Scaffa theme; Scaffas are but one type of room temperature drink that we interpreted as "a mixed drink, often a liquor and a liqueur or two (with or without bitters), stirred in the absence of ice to cool and dilute it." I was curious as to what other styles people could conjure up especially after noting an enthusiasm for room temperature drinks in the latest edition of Beta Cocktails. Instead of venturing into the realm of Pousse-Cafés or other drink types, I stuck with the Scaffa. I thought about some of the room temperature drinks that Misty Kalkofen had done and thus, my eyes went straight to our sherry collection. To the sherry, I figured that an apple brandy would work well, and while the Newark and the Wigglesworth were not specifically on my mind, I decided to add bitter notes to the apple with Fernet Branca. I originally made the drink with Pedro Ximénez sherry, but it rather dominated the flavor profile; I remade the drink the next day with a lighter one, Lustau's East India Solera Sherry, which worked rather well. For a name, I considered the apple brandy and opted for an old Massachusetts varietal called the Nonesuch.
The Nonesuch Scaffa began with grape and orange aromas from the sherry and twist, respectively. Next, the sip showcased the fruit from the apple brandy and sherry, and the swallow presented the chocolate and nuttiness followed by a light menthol note from the Fernet Branca on the finish. When I let Andrea have a sip, she commented that it was "a pleasant sipper with some kick."

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