Tuesday, January 27, 2015

thief of my heart

1 oz Great King Street Scotch
1/2 oz Hamilton's Black Strap Rum
3/4 oz Amaro Sibona (*)
3/4 oz Byrrh Quinquina
2 dash Fee's Rhubard Bitters

Stir with ice and strain into a rocks glass. Twist a lemon peel over the top.
(*) Sub Amaro Nardini in a pinch (see text below).

Two Sundays ago, we made the pilgrimage north to have dinner at the Baldwin Room at Sichuan Garden II. Working the bar that night were Ran Duan and Joel Atlas, and for a first cocktail, I asked Ran for the Thief of My Heart. While I was familiar with a few of Ed Hamilton's new rum line, I had not tried his black strap rum; compared to Cruzan, this one sang with funky rum elegance and complex molasses notes. I was also curious about the Amaro Sibona. Ran described how it was like Amaro Nardini but half the price; overall, it tasted similar to me but a little bit more menthol though.
The lemon oil on the Thief of My Heart brightened the black strap rum's molasses and funk aromas. The sip shared the rum and amaro's caramel, the quinquina's grape, and the Scotch's malt. And the swallow was complex with smoky Scotch, rum funk, and menthol-tinged herbal notes; as the drink warmed up, the quinine from the Byrrh became more evident on the finish.

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