Thursday, January 15, 2015

improper scaffa

1 1/2 oz Pierre Ferrand Ambre Cognac
1/2 oz Cardamaro
1/2 oz St. George Spiced Pear Liqueur
1/2 oz Maraschino Liqueur
1/2 oz Water
1 dash Angostura Bitters

Build in a rocks glass and stir briefly without ice to mix. Note: This is a room temperature cocktail.

Two Fridays ago, I ventured down to Backbar after my shift. For a first drink, I asked bartender Look Theres for the Improper Scaffa off of their menu's Tradesman section. Look attributed the recipe to bar manager Sam Treadway with help, suggestions, and tweaks provided by other members of the Backbar staff. Bartender Melinda Maddox later came by and explained the drink name and concept. First, it is not a Scaffa, but an improper one, since Scaffas do not contain a water component such as the one included here. Second, Scaffas are improper cocktails, since cocktails require at a minimum spirit, sugar, water (which can include ice melt during mixing), and bitters. Backbar also utilized a similar concept in their Missing Link room temperature libation.
The Improper Scaffa began with a brandy and pear aroma with hints of nutty cherry from the Maraschino liqueur. The sip was viscous in mouthfeel but not sweet since the spirits' heat helped to neutralize the sugar content's effects; moreover, the sip shared vague fruit notes. Finally, the swallow presented the majority of the fruit flavors by way of a combination of pear and Maraschino with an allspice, clove, and cinnamon-tinged finish.

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