Thursday, October 2, 2014

i know you know

1 oz Lustau Brandy de Jerez
3/4 oz Lustau Dry Amontillado
3/4 oz St. George Spiced Pear Liqueur
1/2 oz Averna
1 dash Fee's Whiskey Barrel Bitters

Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail coupe. Garnish with grapefruit oil.

Two Thursdays ago, I stopped into Brick & Mortar for a drink. There, bartender Matt Schrage wanted to showcase his submission to the Lustau Spanish brandy competition that he was competing with in a few days. To ruin the suspense, the dude won with this recipe against some stiff competition! The name of the drink is "I Know You Know" after one of jazz musician Esperanza Spalding's songs; Matt explained that Spalding used to play at Wally's here in Boston all the time. When I saw the ingredients, I commented that it seemed a lot like my Endicott Cobbler with brandy; I viewed this as perfectly fair game since Matt helped me problem solve that Cobbler one night at Brick & Mortar, and he was the one that suggested the spiced pear liqueur to the sherry and amaro base.
The I Know You Know began with grapefruit aromas that brightened darker ones from the Averna and sherry. While the sip was full of caramel, grape, and fruit notes, the swallow showcased the brandy and pear flavors with cinnamon and spice notes on the finish. Indeed, the brandy here added an elegance and a perfect stirred cocktail fit to the Cobbler's ingredients.

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