Wednesday, November 30, 2016

cobbler's dream

1 1/4 oz Rye Whiskey (Sazerac)
3/4 oz Punt e Mes
1/4 oz St. Germain (St. Elder)
1 dash Peychaud's Bitters

Stir with ice and strain into a coupe glass pre-rinsed with absinthe (Butterfly). Garnish with a lemon twist or cherry (lemon twist).
Two Wednesdays ago, I returned to The Canon Cocktail Book to try the Cobbler's Dream that reminded me of the L'Amour En Fuite that we had made at home back in 2007. Perhaps the similarity can be explained in that Jamie Boudreau utilized his "golden ratio" and Mr. Potato Head theories to move ingredients around. In the glass, the Cobbler's Dream's rinse offered up the absinthe's anise-driven notes to the nose. Then on the sip, the Punt e Mes' grape paired with fruit notes from the elderflower liqueur, and the swallow presented the familiar combination of rye and Punt e Mes' bitter flavors all with a floral and anise finish.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

jamaican scorpion bowl

1 1/2 oz Overproof White Rum (Rum Fire)
1 1/2 oz Aged Jamaican Rum (Appleton Reserve)
1 oz VS Cognac (Camus)
4 oz Orange Juice
2 oz Lemon Juice
1 1/2 oz Orgeat
1 tsp Demerara Cinnamon Syrup (1/4 oz Cinnamon Syrup)

Blend for 5 seconds with crushed ice, pour into a Scorpion or Wahine Bowl, and top with ice cubes (shake with ice, strain into a Tiki bowl, and fill with crushed ice). Freshly grate cinnamon over the top, and garnish with a gardenia (mint and one of those yellow flowers that grow in front of my house and flower in the autumn).

For Tiki Tuesday two weeks ago, I reached for Lou Bustamante's The Complete Cocktail Manual to find another tropical libation. There, I decided upon the Jamaican Scorpion Bowl crafted by Daniel "Doc" Park," the beverage director for Pagan Idol in San Francisco. The recipe is not too different from the classic Scorpion Bowl save for calling for more robust rums than a light Puerto Rican one as well as adding a cinnamon spice element to the mix and making for a more balanced sweet-tart ratio.
The Jamaican Scorpion Bowl gave forth cinnamon and mint aromas to the nose. Next, the sip was rather creamy from the orgeat and filled with citrus flavors from the lemon and orange juices. And finally, the swallow presented both funky and aged rum alongside brandy notes with a cinnamon-tinged finish.

Monday, November 28, 2016

sooner or later

1 1/2 oz La Favorite Vieux Rhum Agricole (Depaz)
1 1/2 oz Cocchi Sweet Vermouth (Alessio)
1/4 oz Cafe Moka (Galliano Ristretto)
10 drop Bittermens Tiki Bitters (Bittercube Jamaican #2)

Stir with ice, strain into a cocktail glass, and garnish with orange oil.
Two Mondays ago, I was in the mood for something stirred and elegant, and I remembered a recipe from Nick Detrich that I had spotted on the Barnotes app website. Nick created the Sooner or Later recipe a few years ago for "a special menu at Bellocq featuring R(h)um," and the combination made me think of a coffee-tinged Rhum Martinez or perhaps Presidente riff. Once built, the Sooner or Later produced an orange oil and coffee aroma with hints of grape. The grape continued into the sip, and the swallow combined grassy rhum and dark roasted coffee flavors with a spice-driven finish. Overall, it reminded me of a cousin of the rum-based Coffee Negroni

Sunday, November 27, 2016

shrouded roulette

1 1/2 oz Pisco (Encanto)
1/2 oz Salers Gentiane Liqueur
1/2 oz Apricot Liqueur (Rothman & Winter)
2 dash Angostura Bitters

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

Two Sundays ago, I turned to the Canon Cocktail Book and spotted this curious pisco recipe called the Shrouded Roulette. The name refers to the Canon's bartender's choice that is described on the menu as "Tell us your base spirit, and we'll create the mystery. Every recipe secret and unique." The goal for the shrouded roulette is to never repeat the drink combination twice in a shift which can mean up to a 100 different generated on a busy night. While the other on-the-spot creations in the book have unique names, this one is dubbed after the process. While unique, luckily the staff did not keep it a secret!
The Shrouded Roulette gave forth a bright lemon and apricot aroma that preceded a dry apricot sip. Next, the swallow offered a lot of complexity with an earthy note from the pisco and gentian, a floral element from the pisco, and a clove-spice finish from the bitters. I was quite impressed at how well gentian worked with the apricot liqueur as it had in the only other drink I have experienced with that combination, namely Misty Kalkofen's Human Rocket.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

port of goteborg

1 oz Lemon Juice
3/4 oz Passion Fruit Syrup
1 oz Swedish Punsch (Kronan)
1/2 oz Aquavit (Krogstad)
1/2 oz Honey Syrup
2 oz Aged Medium Bodied Blended Rum (Barbancourt 8 Year)
1 dash Angostura Bitters
2 oz Soda Water

Flash blend with 12 oz crushed ice and pour into a Tiki mug (shake all but the soda water with ice, strain into a Tiki mug with 2 oz soda water, and fill with crushed ice). Garnish with mint sprigs.

Two Saturdays ago, I decided to make a drink that I had spotted on Facebook called the Port of Göteborg. The recipe was created by Martin Cate of Smuggler's Cove for the Swedish exotica band Ixtahuele. The drink is named after the largest port among the Nordic countries and the only Swedish port large enough to handle large ships. Aquavit has found its way into Tiki drinks throughout the years such as in the Viking Fog Cutter and Balsa Raft, and I was game to experience again how its unique spice blend can work wonders in Tiki drinks.
The Port of Göteborg's mint garnishes contributed most of the drink's aroma. Next, the carbonated lemon, honey, and passion fruit sip was rather tropical akin to what was observed in the Port Light, Max's Mistake, and the Surfa Rosa. And finally, the swallow proffered rum and the punsch's tea flavors before finishing with lingering caraway notes from the aquavit.

Friday, November 25, 2016

midnight bouquet

1 1/2 oz Añejo Tequila (Lunazul Reposado)
1/4 oz Mezcal (Montelobos)
3/4 oz Averna
1/2 oz Elderflower Liqueur (St. Elder)
1 dash Grapefruit Bitters (Scrappy's Lime)

Stir with ice, strain into a coupe glass, and garnish with a grapefruit twist.
Two Fridays ago after my shift, I was in the mood for a nightcap and I remembered a drink that I had spotted on PunchDrinks. That recipe was the Midnight Bouquet created by Meaghan Dorman of Manhattan's Raines Law, and the combination spirit, Averna, and elderflower reminded me of a Cynar-less Valkyrie. Once prepared, the Midnight Bouquet gave forth a grapefruit and agave nose with hints of smoke and floral notes. Next, the Averna's caramel provided a smooth sip, and the swallow shared smoky agave, herbal, floral, and pear-like flavors with a lime finish from my bitters substitution.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

tarzan cocktail

1 oz Gin (GrandTen Wireworks)
1 oz Campari
1 1/2 oz Pineapple Juice
1/2 oz Lemon Juice
1/2 oz Simple Syrup

Shake with ice, strain into a Collins glass, and top with soda (strain into a Collins glass with 2 oz soda, and top with ice). Garnish with an orange slice (orange swath).

Two Thursdays ago, I returned to Sasha Petraske: Regarding Cocktails to make another drink. In the text for the Bicycle Thief created by Zachary Gelnaw-Rubin and Abraham Hawkin at Dutch Kills, there was a note that substituting that drink's grapefruit juice for pineapple yielded the Tarzan Cocktail. The Tarzan in the name and the Campari in the mix reminded me of the tropical Negroni variation Tarzan Boy, so I was game to try this. True, grapefruit juice surely would have been delightful here such as in the Tasmanian Twister, but I was all out of said fruit.
The Tarzan Cocktail shared an orange aroma that was a combination of the twist's oil and the Campari, and this led into a carbonated citrus and pineapple sip. Next, the swallow elegantly paired gin flavors with Campari's bitter orange notes.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

the isle of fawkes

2 oz Pimm's No. 1
1 oz Boodle's Gin (Beefeater)
1/2 oz Passion Fruit Syrup
1/2 oz Simple Syrup
3/4 oz Lemon Juice
1/4 oz Fernet Branca

Shake with ice, strain into a Tiki mug, fill with crushed ice, and garnish with an "effigy from orange peel, fire, mint, pineapple leaves" (lemon shell with ignited El Dorado 151, mint orange swaths).

A few weeks ago, I was intrigued with a drink on Brian Maxwell's Instagram called the Isle of Fawkes that he had created either at the Grass Skirt Tiki Room or the Side Bar, both in a Columbus, Ohio. While the Instagram description only listed the ingredients, I spotted the actually recipe via the OnTheBar recipe database, and I decided to make it soon after. My guess is that he served this on November 5th which is Guy Fawkes Night commemorating the Gunpowder Plot failure; celebrations since this 1605 incident include burning his effigy in a bonfire. The combination of Pimm's and Fernet Branca reminded me of the Diddlin' Dora, and the fact that it was Tiki-fied did not hurt.
The Isle of Fawkes once the bonfire of a garnish was extinguished proffered an orange and mint bouquet. Next, lemon and tropical fruit on the sip led into gin and passion fruit on the swallow with a menthol-driven finish.

passport painkiller

1 oz Dewar's 12 Year Scotch
1/4 oz Laphroaig 10 Year Scotch
1/2 oz Blackwell Rum
1/4 oz St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram
2 oz Pineapple Juice
1 oz Orange Juice
1 oz Coconut Syrup

Shake with ice and strain into a Tiki mug. Fill with crushed ice and garnish with a pineapple fruit leaf, orange twist, and freshly grated nutmeg.

Two Wednesdays ago, I stopped into Backbar for their drink of the day which was a riff on the classic Painkiller. Sam Cronin had created this libation for the day after election day as "anything to transport us away and kill the pain." Sam described how his tweaks resulted in something not too far from the classic, and the additional spice, malt, and smoke flavors did not amount to too much of a shock treatment to the soul. Moreover, Scotch Tiki is not that that big of a stretch either, considering that drinks like the Starboard Light and Cocoanut Grove Cooler are in the Tiki lexicon and more modern Tiki numbers like 3 Dots and a Dash's Tall As A Tree and Twice as Shady exist.
The Passport Painkiller generated an orange and nutmeg nose from the garnishes, and this preceded a creamy orange and pineapple sip. Next, the swallow offered a bit of complexity with smoky whisky, dark rum, coconut, and allspice flavors.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

debbie, don't

1 oz Reposado Tequila (Lunazul)
1 oz Averna
3/4 oz Lemon Juice
1/2 oz Maple Syrup (Merton's)

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail coupe.

Two Tuesday ago, I decided to make one of the recipes that I spotted while reading Sasha Petraska: Regarding Cocktails called the Debbie, Don't. The recipe was crafted by Zachary Gelnaw-Rubin at Dutch Kills and named after the ghost who haunts the bar's bathrooms. The tie in to Sasha is that he helped to open the bar and rather enjoyed this drink when he used to visit for he touted it as the best Averna cocktail he has ever had.
The Debbie, Don't gave forth a caramel, dark maple, and vegetal agave nose. The Averna's caramel continued on into the sip where it mingled with the crisp lemon, and the swallow paired the tequila with rich maple notes.

Monday, November 21, 2016

everything nice

1 1/2 oz Pierre Ferrand 1840 Cognac
3/4 oz St. George Spiced Pear
3/4 oz Pineau des Charentes
1/2 oz St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram

Stir with ice, strain into a rocks glass, and garnish with an orange twist.
The drink that Andrea requested at Brick & Mortar was the Everything Nice that was perhaps dubbed after the "sugar & spice" nursery rhyme to describe girls given the recipe. In the glass, Everything Nice's orange oils accented a fruity grape aroma. Next, grape and orchard fruit on the sip led into Cognac on the swallow with a pear, allspice, and clove finish. Just like the rhyme, the Everything Nice was a touch on the sweeter side, and it did not let down on the spice aspect.


1 1/2 oz Iwai Japanese Whiskey
1/2 oz Meletti Amaro
1/4 oz Giffard Banane du Bresil
1/4 oz Crème de Cacao
2 dash Teapot Bitters

Stir with ice, strain into a rocks glass, fill with ice, and add a straw.
Two Mondays ago, Andrea and I headed over to Brick & Mortar where Hugh Fiore and Taylor MacKinnon were at the stick. For a first drink, I requested the Kon'Nichiwa!!! which reminded me of Tiger Mama's Japanese whiskey-based Flushing-Main Street. In the glass, the Kon'Nichiwa!!! gave forth a tropical whiskey aroma. Next, the sip shared malty and caramel notes, and the swallow began with whiskey, banana, and herbal flavors and ended with a chocolate finish. Overall, it was a touch on the sweeter side of balanced for me, but it was a rather delightful flavor combination.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

colonel beach's plantation punch

1 oz Lime Juice
2 oz Pineapple Juice
2 oz Dark Jamaican Rum (Coruba)
1 oz Gold Puerto Rican Rum (Don Q Gold)
1/2 oz Gold Barbados Rum (Plantation 5 Year)
1/2 oz Falernum (Velvet)
1 dash Angostura Bitters
6 drop Pernod (Pernod Absinthe)

Shake with ice and strain into a tall glass (Tiki bowl) with 2 oz ginger beer (AJ Stephans). Fill with ice, and garnish with a pineapple chunk and mint sprig (crushed ice with mint sprigs, lime twist, and borage flowers).
With ginger beer in the house, I began looking for other uses for it and my wanderings led me to Beachbum Berry's Remixed. There, I spotted the Colonel Beach's Plantation Punch from Don the Beachcomber in the 1950s, and it was very different flavor-wise from the Don's Beach Planter that I made a few years ago but with a similar recipe backbone. Once prepared, the Colonel Beach's Plantation Punch gave forth a rum funk, pineapple, mint, and ginger bouquet to the nose. Next, lime, pineapple, and the rum's caramel filled the sip, and the swallow proffered dark rum, pineapple, ginger, and spice notes. Overall, with the flavorful ginger beer, it came across more like a Rum Mule than a Planter's Punch.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

jack of no trade

2 oz Laird's Applejack
1/2 oz Punt e Mes
1/2 oz Pedro Ximenez Sherry (Lustau)
1/4 oz Campari

Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a cucumber slice (omitted).

Two Saturdays ago, my nightcap was the Jack of No Trade created by Ted Kilgore of Planter's House in St. Louis. Ted crafted this drink at Gaz Regan's Cocktails in the Country this year; given how Regan has a proclivity to Negronis, Ted was probably inspired to create a variation just as I had with the René Barbier the year before. Ted's riff utilized applejack as the base spirit, and the split grape modifiers that included Punt e Mes reminded me of two of Phil Ward's drinks, namely the Cornwall Negroni also created at Regan's event and the Baltasar & Blimunda.
The Jack of No Trade began with a raisin aroma with hints of apple. The sherry continued into the sip along with the Punt e Mes as a rich sweet grape flavor, and the swallow offered the complexity of apple and bitter raisin notes with an orange and dried fruit finish.

Friday, November 18, 2016

caribbean milk punch

The theme for this month's Mixology Monday (MxMo CXIII) was picked by Gary of the Doc Elliott's Mixology blog. The theme he chose was "Bacon, Eggs, & Booze," and he elaborated on the choice with his description of, "Well, it's autumn, with falling temperatures and falling leaves, kiddos and costumes and far too many treats. Looming are the next set of holidays, the serious ones complete with feasts, gifts, parties and gatherings of family and friends. One perennial problem is: what to do with guests the morning after, or the morning of, or the morning before? Well, you get the idea. Think BRUNCH... But, remember the Law of the Universe: 'A brunch without booze is just a sad, late breakfast!' So, the theme for Mixology Monday CXIII is Bacon, Eggs, and Booze..."

I began to contemplate all of the brunch drinks that I enjoy which include New Orleans-style Fizzes like the Ramos, light citrussy numbers like the Corpse Reviver #2, and the like. The host of the event excluded champagne cocktails to give a better depth of responses, so that was out, and I am not a fan of Bloody Marys either. My mind drifted to the drinks that I put on the Loyal Nine brunch menu that included light citrussy drinks -- both carbonated and not -- and a milk punch. No, not the clarified milk punches that have taken the mixology world by storm in the last 8 years or so, but the unclarified ones often linked to New Orleans brunch culture. I then turned to the famous Brennan's recipe for milk punch but that was a bit similar to Deep Ellum's Bourbon Milk Punch and my Miller's River Milk Punch. Instead, I remember looking at the Brennan's menu while at Tales of the Cocktail this past July and spotting a second milk punch on the menu called the Caribbean Milk Punch. I was intrigued, but I was too busy that week to investigate with my palate. However, with a little internet sleuthing, I was able to turn up a recipe to make up for that missed opportunity.
The recipe was contributed by Lu Brow, the lead bartender of Brennan's, who declared, "This sounds crazy to anybody who doesn't live in New Orleans, but a cocktail is a great way to start the day. If we had as many brandy milk punch houses as coffeehouses, we'd all get along." The punch has a split spirit base of a funky Caribbean rum complemented by a half part of Bourbon. Moreover, unlike the other milk punches that call for a decent amount of whole milk (sometimes half and half) and are served over ice in a large glass, this one smooths over the balance by using a smaller amount of rather rich heavy cream and served in a cocktail coupe.
Caribbean Milk Punch
• 1 oz Mt. Gay Black Barrel Rum or use Smith & Cross as a sub (Smith & Cross)
• 1/2 oz Buffalo Trace Bourbon (Old Granddad Bonded)
• 1 oz Vanilla Syrup (BG Reynolds)
• 1 oz Heavy Cream
Shake with ice, strain into a coupe glass, and garnish with freshly grated nutmeg.
The Caribbean Milk Punch gave forth a nutmeg aroma that shared a hint of funky rum notes. Next, a rich, creamy sip relayed a small amount of caramel from the aged spirits, and the swallow presented a muted funky rum, glimpses of the Bourbon, and a large amount of vanilla. The recipe was surprisingly easy to drink despite the two spirits being 114° and 100° proof. Perhaps, the recipe would be more brunch-friendly with the original call for an 86° rum and a 90° whiskey not to mention a less intensely funky rum. Still, I can easily imagine sipping this while eating French toast but perhaps not an omelette. Well, I could see drinking one before the omelette though.

So thanks again to Gary of Doc Elliott's Mixology for hosting this month, and cheers to all of the other participants and readers who continue to make Mixology Monday _the_ online cocktail party for the last ten and a half years!

la guildive

2 oz Blended Aged Rum (Plantation 5 Year Barbados)
1/2 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Licor 43
1/4 oz Natural Peach Liqueur (Briottet Crème de Peche de Vigne)
1 pinch Freshly Grated Cinnamon

Shake with ice and strain into a coupe glass with 1 oz ginger beer (AJ Stephans). Garnish with a lime twist.
Since Mules were on my mind, two Fridays ago after my workshift, I decided to make one that I had spotted in the Smuggler's Cove book called La Guildive. This Rum Mule created by Martin Cate was accented by vanilla, citrus, and peach flavored ingredients and named after the old French slang term for rum. Once built, La Guildive presented a lime and cinnamon bouquet to the nose. Next, a carbonated lime sip led into caramel rum, vanilla, and peach flavors on the swallow with a ginger and cinnamon finish.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

chi chi mule

2 oz Vodka (Russian Standard)
3/4 oz Lime Juice
2 oz Pineapple Juice
3/4 oz Coco Lopez Coconut Cream
2 dash Angostura Bitters

Shake with ice and strain into a Moscow Mule mug (or Double Old Fashioned) with 2 oz ginger beer (AJ Stephans). Garnish with a lime wheel.
For the 75th anniversary of the Moscow Mule, ShakeStir held a competition to find the best vodka-based Mule variation. I decided to do a mashup and I described the idea as, "A cross between my favorite vodka Tiki drink, the Chi Chi [a vodka Piña Colada], and one of the best vodka drinks, the Moscow Mule!" Actually, I have only had a variation of said Tiki drink, Teardrop Lounge's Thai Chi Chi, at the Bar Room Brawl at Tales of the Cocktail 2011. Adding additional flavors of Thai basil and allspice there did not seem too different from adding ginger and Angostura Bitters here in theory. While the drink did not win the competition, it was a pleasing libation that began with lime and ginger aromas. Next, the sip was rather creamy with lime and pineapple flavors, and the swallow offered the tropical combination of coconut and ginger. As a side note, an image search of the name pulls up fashionable shoes, so perhaps it is time to up your footware game before sipping this?

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

the sexpert

1/2 oz Lemon Juice
1/2 oz Passion Fruit Syrup
1/2 oz Velvet Falernum
1 1/2 oz Peruvian Pisco (Encanto)
1/2 oz Gin (Aviation)
6 drop Bittermens Burlesque Bitters

Shake with ice and strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with an edible orchid or hibiscus flower (borage flowers).
Two weeks ago, I returned home from a Wednesday night shift at work and was in the mood for a fun nightcap. Therefore, I turned to the Smuggler's Cove book for inspiration. Amongst those pages, I uncovered Martin Cate's The Sexpert that he crafted in honor of Susie Bright's book launch party at the bar in 2011. In the glass, The Sexpert shared a floral aroma from the garnish and perhaps the pisco that was accented by clove from the falernum. Next, the sip offered lemon and tropical notes, and the swallow presented earthy and floral pisco flavors spiced by gin botanicals and the falernum's clove.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

tippi boat

1 oz The 86 Co. Caña Brava Rum
1 oz Lustau Amontillado Sherry
1 oz Pineapple Juice
1/2 oz Darjeeling Tea Syrup
1/2 oz Lemon Juice

Shake with ice and strain into a Collins glass partially rimmed with paprika salt. Fill with cracked ice, add a straw, and garnish with a canoe swizzle stick.
For my second drink at the Cane & Table takeover of Brick & Mortar on Halloween, I asked bar owner Nick Detrich for the Tippi Boat on their Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds-themed menu. The menu had it listed as the "Tipi Boat," but since the actress in the movie's name is Tippi Hedren, I figured that it was a typo. Nick described how he fell in love with the idea of paprika from Charles H. Baker Jr.'s Genever drink the Holland Razor Blade, and the paprika worked just as well with Amontillado as it did with Genever. Once mixed, the Tippi Boat gave forth a spicy vegetal aroma from the garnish that led into a pineapple and lemon sip. Finally, the swallow offered rum and tea flavors with a pineapple finish.

resting mitch face

2 oz The 86 Co Ford's Gin
1 oz Lustau Manzanilla Sherry
1/4 oz Combier Pamplemousse Liqueur
2 dash Orange Bitters

Build in a rocks glass, add ice, and stir to mix and chill. Garnish with a lemon twist, and place the glass on top of a photo of Mitch Brenner (actor Rod Taylor).
For a second drink at The Birds-themed Cane and Table Halloween pop-up at Brick and Mortar, Andrea asked for the Resting Mitch Face. This grapefruit-tinged riff on the sherry Tuxedo Cocktail was a pun on the "resting bitch face" appearance as well as a movie reference to the character Mitch Brenner played by actor Rod Taylor. Moreover, the face picture as garnish reminded me of the John Stamos swizzle stick in the Stamos Gin Fizz. In the glass, the Resting Mitch Face gave forth lemon, juniper, and hints of grapefruit to the nose. Next, the sherry's wine notes made up most of the flavors on the sip, and the swallow began with gin, crisp sherry, and grapefruit notes and ended with a celery finish from perhaps the gin interacting with the Manzanilla.

Monday, November 14, 2016

dove in paradise

1 1/2 oz The 86 Co. Caña Brava Rum
1 oz Coco Lopez Coconut Cream
1/2 oz Herbsaint
1/2 oz Lemon Juice

Shake with ice and strain into a Collins glass. Fill with crushed ice, add straws, and garnish with a mint sprig.
For my first drink at the Cane & Table pop-up at Brick & Mortar on Halloween, I opted for the Dove in Paradise. I was not able to decipher how the name fit into the plot of The Birds movie theme, but I was game to try this Herbsaint-tinged Coconaut of sorts. Once prepared by Cane & Table's Sam Parrie, the Dove in Paradise shared a mint and coconut bouquet to the nose. Next, the sip shared a creamy lemon flavor that gave way to rum, nutty, and anise notes on the swallow. Overall, the combination was delightfully dry, and the Herbsaint was in good balance with the other ingredients.

love birds

1 1/2 oz The 86 Co. Cabeza Tequila
3/4 oz Passion Fruit Syrup
3/4 oz Lemon Juice
7 drop Grapefruit Bitters

Shake with ice and strain into a Collins glass with 2 oz sparkling wine. Fill with crushed ice, add straws, and garnish with a grapefruit twist with a cut out of a bird.

For Halloween, I was rather excited to hear that New Orlean's Cane and Table bartenders were coming up to Boston to do a pop-up night at Brick and Mortar. The event was sponsored by the 86 Co. line of spirits and the chosen holiday theme was Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds. To coincide with the film idea, the three Cane and Table bartenders concocted a 5 drink menu, and between Andrea and myself, we were able to sample all but one of them. For a start, Andrea asked bartender Sam Parrie for the Love Birds that reminded me on paper of a sparkling version of Hopping Throught the Frothy Waves. Sam actually remembered me from July when I sat at her bar last during Tales of the Cocktail.
The Love Birds was a reference to the type of birds that the main characters bought in the movie, and the drink began with grapefruit and passion fruit aromas. Next, lemon paired well with the carbonated wine on the sip, and the swallow balanced the tequila and wine flavors with a dry passion fruit and grapefruit swallow.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

fannie ward

1 jigger Bacardi Rum (1 1/2 oz Owney's Rum)
Juice 1/2 Lime (1/2 oz)
2 dash Grenadine (3/4 oz)
White of an Egg

Shake once without and once with ice, and strain into a cocktail glass. I added 3 drops of Bittermens Molé Bitters as a garnish.

Two Sundays ago, I spotted my reprint of Tom Bullock's 1917 Ideal Bartender and decided to pick my evening's libation from that tome. The Fannie Ward caught my eye for the name and its likeness to some versions of the September Morn. Fannie was an American stage and film actress who became famous due to her strangely ageless appearance. Just like the painting September Morn captured innocence, Fannie always appeared youthful.
The Fannie Ward presented a grassy rum aroma with hints of chocolate to the nose. Next, a creamy and crisp pomegranate sip transitioned into a rum swallow with a lime finish. The egg white donated a silky elegance to an otherwise simple Bacardi Cocktail.

lifting the fog

1 1/2 oz Privateer Silver Rum
3/4 oz Lustau Spanish Brandy (*)
1/2 oz Passion Fruit Syrup
1/2 oz Velvet Falernum
1/2 oz Demerara Syrup
1/2 oz Lemon Juice

Shake with ice and strain into a tall glass. Fill with crushed ice almost to the top, float 1/2 oz Sercial Madeira, and garnish with an orange-cherry flag.
(*) The original also included 1/2 oz Batavia Arrack but was removed to make the menu item less of a booze bomb. However, this is what some of the sweet modifiers were working to balance.
One of the other drinks that caught my eye in the Loyal Nine barbook was Jon Theris' drink of the day called Lifting the Fog. His riff on the Fog Cutter swapped passion fruit for orange, falernum for orgeat, and Madeira for shery in the float. Instead of gin, Jon included Batavia Arrack in the mix, but it was removed when it hit the Fall 2016 menu to reduce the overall alcohol content.

Saturday, November 12, 2016


2/3 Scotch (1 1/2 oz Buchanan's 12 Year + 1 bsp Caol Ila 12 Year)
2 dash Apricot Brandy (1/4 oz Rothman & Winter)
1 dash Dry Vermouth (3/4 oz Noilly Prat)
1 dash Curaçao (1/4 oz Pierre Ferrand Dry)
1 dash Picon Bitters (1/4 oz Amer Picon)

Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.
After trying the Frisby a few nights before, I returned to Pioneers of Mixing at Elite Bars: 1903-1933 to try another curaçao-Picon combination called the Magician. Here, the spirit was Scotch instead of brandy and the vermouth was dry instead of sweet; moreover, there was an additional liqueur of apricot in the mix. The combination of Picon and apricot appeared in that book in their Montana. Once prepared, the Magician shared an orange, apricot, and peaty aroma that led into a malt-driven sip. The swallow lived up to the name with a complex smoky Scotch and bitter orange swallow that ended with apricot flavors and a lingering smoke note. Indeed, I was rather impressed at how well the apricot interacted with the smoke here.

Friday, November 11, 2016


2 oz Gin (Seagram's)
1 oz Cognac (Camus VS)
1 oz Pineapple Juice
1/2 oz Curaçao (Van der Hum)
1/2 oz St. Germain (St. Elder)
1/2 oz Coco Lopez Coconut Cream
2 dash Orange Bitters (Regan's)

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass (a coconut Tiki mug filled with crushed ice). Garnish with a punch of cinnamon and a pineapple leaf (cinnamon and mint sprigs).

Two Fridays ago after my work night, I was in a Tiki mood, so I reached for Beachbum Berry's Remixed. There, I spotted one of Craig Mrusek's (a/k/a Dr. Bamboo) recipes that was described as his gin-based Painkiller riff that included elements of the Fog Cutter. I was able to sleuth down the origins of the drink to a gin-themed Mixoloseum Thursday Drink Night in 2008. His recipe from that event was similar save for the generic call for "brandy" instead of Cognac and the mixing directions as "Blend with 6oz crushed ice and pour into an angry tiki mug." I met things part way by straining over crushed ice and using a less-than-angry Tiki mug. And before any sugar-phobes begin to complain about the recipe, I knew a priori that the resultant mix would be on the sweet side. In terms of the name, Pololu is the series of valleys formed by erosion on the eastern coast of Hawaii and translates to "long spear."
The Pololu greeted the nose with a mixed spice aroma from the cinnamon and mint. Next, a creamy orange sip gave way to a gin, floral, and coconut swallow. Indeed, the Pololu was a touch sweet as expected, and perhaps 1/2-3/4 oz of lime juice would not be out of place for those looking to try this flavor combination but with a drier palate.


1 1/2 oz Amaras Mezcal
1/2 oz Green Chartreuse
1/2 oz Velvet Falernum
1/2 oz Lime Juice

Build in a tall glass, fill with crushed ice, and swizzle to mix and chill. Add straws and garnish with 3-4 dash Angostura Bitters and a mint sprig.
For the most recent menu change at Loyal Nine, I looked through the bar log at all of the interesting drinks that the other two bartenders had come up with. Two of Michelle Harrington's drinks that caught my eye utilized rhum agricole as a base; however, I felt there was only room for one rhum drink. I was taking off a mezcal drink though, so after beta testing the change, I asked if I could swap her recipe to an agave one. She agree, but she needed to come up with a new name rather quickly for the menu was set to print shortly. I suggested Mexican actress names, but none seemed to work out; Michelle dramatically called out "Tele-no-vela" as the genre's name and it worked perfectly as the drink's name too.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

paddy wallbanger

1 1/2 oz Black Bush Irish Whiskey (Teeling Small Batch)
1 1/2 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth (Noilly Prat)
1/2 oz Galliano L'Autentico
2 dash Orange Bitters (Regan's)

Stir with ice and strain into a coupe glass.

For a post-shift cocktail two weeks ago, I reached for the PDT Cocktail Book and stumbled upon Gerry Corcoran's 2009 Paddy Wallbanger. Shortly after the current formulation of Galliano was launched, many bars began reconsidering the spirit such as Craigie on Main with their Jimador Sour and Rendezvous offering the Whiskey-A-Go-Go. PDT was no exception, and Gerry decided to reinterpret the Harvey Wallbanger as an Irish Manhattan riff with perhaps the orange bitters subbing in for the original's orange juice.
The Paddy Wallbanger gave forth a whiskey aroma that was spiced with vanilla and star anise notes. Next, the whiskey's malt filled the sip, and the swallow continued on with further whiskey notes and a variety of herbal and spice flavors including licorice and lavender.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016


2/3 Brandy (1 3/4 oz Camus VS Cognac)
2 dash Sweet Vermouth (3/4 oz Alessio)
2 dash Curaçao (1/4 oz Pierre Ferrand Dry)
1 dash Picon Bitters (1/4 oz Amer Picon)

Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.
Two Wednesdays ago, I sought out Pioneers for Mixing at Elite Bars: 1903-1933 for the evening's nightcap. There, I spotted the Frisby that appeared like a bitter orange-tinged Brandy Manhattan. I was curious if it was named after the flying disc, but not only is that spelled Frisbee, it was not invented until the 1940s after the recipe's publication. The Frisby is one of the many drinks in that book that pair curaçao with Picon such as in the White Rat to achieve a more complex bitter citrus flavor. The Frisby once prepared offered a grape aroma with dark orange notes to the nose. Next, the vermouth's grape continued on into the sip, and the swallow began with brandy and bitter notes and ended with an orange flavor from the two liqueurs.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

king bee

1 1/2 oz Barsol Quebranta Pisco (Encanto)
3/4 oz Lemon Juice
1/2 oz Benedictine
1/2 oz Baranjager

Shake with ice and strain into a coupe glass. Float 1/2 oz Lustau Palo Cortado Sherry (Lustau Oloroso).
Two Tuesdays ago, I reached for the PDT Cocktail Book and uncovered the King Bee by Nate Dumas in 2009. This drink named after the Muddy Waters' "I am a King Bee" song reminded me of a cross between a Bee's Knees and a Honeymoon Cocktail. Once prepared, it presented a nutty aroma with a hint of honey to the nose. Next, lemon was paired with honey on the sip, and the swallow offered pisco, herbal, and for the first few sips nutty flavors all with a honey finish.

Monday, November 7, 2016

merchant's fog cutter

3/4 oz Lustau Brandy
3/4 oz Lehment Aquavit
1 oz Falernum
1 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Orange Juice

Shake with ice, strain into a Collins glass, fill with crushed ice, and float 1/2 oz Blandy's Malmsey Madeira. Garnish with freshly grated nutmeg and a mint sprig.

Two Mondays ago, Andrea and I ventured over to Sarma for dinner. For a drink, I asked bartender Hillary Neuman for the Merchant's Fog Cutter. Their Fog Cutter riff had a few alterations including aquavit in the mix like in the Viking Fog Cutter, Madeira instead of sherry as the float like No. 9 Park's version, lime instead of lemon like at Lost Lake, and falernum instead of orgeat like the Lifting the Fog at Loyal Nine.
The Merchant's Fog Cutter began with a nutmeg and mint aroma that led into an orange and lime sip. Next, the swallow started with brandy, aquavit, celery, and spice notes that gained grape flavors as the Malmsey float sank. We had a similar problem with Malmsey sinking at Loyal Nine, so we opt for Sercial instead.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

midnight alarm

1 1/2 oz Light Rum (Old Ipswich White Cap)
Juice 1/2 Lemon (1/2 oz)
1 tsp Sugar (1/2 oz Simple Syrup)
2 oz Pineapple Juice

Shake with ice and strain into a wine glass.

On Sunday night two weeks ago, I turned to Bottoms Up for my post-shift nightcap. There, I spotted a recipe called the Midnight Alarm that came by way of the Parker House in Boston. Ted Saucier also captured their Parker House Punch, but this one was a tribute to Paul Revere's evening ride in 1775. Given that the distillery that Turkey Shore is based off of was active during that Revere's time period, I figured that their Old Ipswich White Cap Rum would be perfect for this drink.
The Midnight Alarm greeted the senses with a pineapple and butterscotch aroma. Next, pineapple and lemon made for a refreshing sip, and the swallow offered rum and further pineapple flavors.

poet's dream

2 oz Berkshire Mountain Greylock Gin
3/4 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth
1/4 oz Benedictine
2 dash Bitter Cube Orange Bitters

Stir with ice, strain into a cocktail glass, and garnish with a lemon twist.
For the Loyal Nine classic of the day two weeks ago, I asked for requests and a straight spirits gin drink was the chosen theme. I remembered back to my Diplomat bar guest at Russell House who was so impressed by my Martini that he began emailing me to discuss the drink. In future visits, I introduced him to other variations like the Martinez and the Hanky Panky; however, he stopped showing before I could enact others on the list including the Poet's Dream. Although there are equal part recipes of that drink, I prefer the one that utilizes the Benedictine as a minor modifier like Maraschino and Fernet Branca in the other two Martini variations. Wondrich tracked that Poet's Dream recipe back to 1934 and the equal part one to the Old Waldorf-Astoria Cocktail Book, but the recipe, albeit with Old Tom Gin, tracks back to 1895 with the Ford Cocktail. Built the way described above way, the Benedictine added a slight herbal complexity and darker color to a nearly 3:1 Martini.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

devil's backbone

1 oz Rye Whiskey (Sazerac)
1/2 oz Smoky Single Malt like Ardbeg 10 (Caol Ila 12)
3/4 oz Averna
1/2 oz Gran Classico or other aperitivo (Campari)
1 dash Angostura Bitters
1 dash Orange Bitters (Regan's)

Stir with ice, strain into a coupe, and garnish with an orange twist.

Around the same time that I had spotted the Autumn Negroni, I had put another Negroni-like drink, the Devil's Backbone, on the to-make list. I found the recipe in Lou Bustamante's The Complete Cocktail Manual; Chris Lane of San Francisco's Ramen Shop described how this was two whiskeys, two amari, and 2 bitters in concept. Moreover, the cocktail reminded me in name and ingredients of Ted Kilgore's Devil's Soul, so I was definitely game in trying this one out.
The Devil's Backbone gave forth an orange and peat smoke bouquet to the nose. Next, malt and caramel on the sip transitioned into smoky whisky, bitter orange, and herbal flavors on the swallow; overall, it was a bit sharper than a Boulevardier perhaps from the smoky single malt but in the same ballpark.

Friday, November 4, 2016

port light

2 oz Bourbon (Old Granddad Bonded)
1 oz Lemon Juice
3/4 oz Honey Syrup
1/2 oz Passion Fruit Syrup
1 Egg White

Dry blend, add 12 oz crushed ice, and blend again (shake once without ice and once with ice). Pour into a footed Pilsner glass and garnish with a swizzle stick (strain into a glass, and garnish with a mint sprig and a lemon twist).

I had spotted in the Smuggler's Cove Cocktail Book a variation of the Port Light that was different than the one more classic one presented in Beachbum Berry's Remixed (see below). Instead of the grenadine egg-less number, this one was closer to the Starboard Light with honey and egg white. While the passion fruit, grenadine, and citrus trio appears in many other classic Tiki drinks such as the Pahoehoe, the passion fruit, honey, and citrus one works so much better such as in the Don's Special Daiquiri. So two Fridays ago, I set to work.
The Port Light gave forth a mint and Bourbon aroma that shared hints of honey and lemon. Next, a creamy lemon and honey sip transitioned into whiskey on the swallow with a tropical finish.
Port Light (from Remixed)
• 1 1/2 oz Bourbon
• 1 oz Lemon Juice
• 1/2 oz Passion Fruit Syrup
• 1/4 oz Grenadine
Blend with 8 oz crushed ice, pour into a Port Light glass, and top with ice.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

autumn negroni

2 oz Dry Gin (Beefeater)
3/4 oz Carpano Antica Sweet Vermouth (Alessio)
1/2 oz Cynar
1/2 oz Campari
1/4 oz Fernet Branca
1 dash Orange Bitters (Regan's)
1 dash Peychaud's Bitters

Stir with ice, strain into a coupe glass, and garnish with an orange twist.

Two Thursdays ago, I came across an excellent Negroni riff created at the Violet Hour in Chicago by way of the Drink & Drinking blog. This circa 2011 riff bears some similarity to the Toby Maloney's Eeyore's Requiem at the Violet Hour (and E.C.C.'s riff on that, the Winnie the Pooh). Moreover, the Cynar, Campari, and Fernet trilogy has appeared in a few drinks including the Bottecchia from Gaz Regan's The Negroni book.
The Autumn Negroni gave forth a bright orange oil nose that countered darker herbal aromas. Next, the vermouth's grape mingled with the amari's caramel on the sip, and the swallow offered gin, bitter orange, and funky herbal flavors with a menthol-tinged finish.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

stage dives & fist fights

1 1/2 oz Blanco Tequila (Espolon)
3/4 oz Pedro Ximenez Sherry (Lustau)
3/4 oz Sweet Vermouth (Alessio)
2 dash Cardamom Bitters (1 pod's worth of seeds, muddled in the tequila)

Stir with ice and strain into a rocks glass with ice. Garnish with an orange peel crown.
Two Wednesdays ago, I returned to Lou Bustamante's The Complete Cocktail Manual and spotted the Stage Dives & Fist Fights. The recipe was created by Stephen Mendez of the Last Word in San Antonio, Texas, and appeared like a tequila Manhattan with a sweet, raisiny sherry in place of half of the vermouth. Once built, it gave forth an orange oil and cardamom nose. Next, a rich grape sip gave way to tequila, raisins, and cardamom spice.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

vieux rectangle

1 1/2 oz Grosperrin VSOP Cognac (Camus VS)
1/2 oz Dolin Rouge Vermouth (Alessio Sweet)
1/2 oz Aperol
2 dash Angostura Bitters
2 dash Peychaud's Bitters
2 dash Absinthe (1/8 oz Butterfly)

Stir with ice, strain into a vintage cocktail stem glass or a mini cocktail coupe; garnish with lemon oil.
Two Tuesdays ago, I dusted off my copy of the Experimental Cocktail Club Cocktail Book and found my list of drinks left to try. The list item that called out to me was the Vieux Rectangle invented by Arthur Combe at the E.C.C. Paris Curio Parlour as his twist on a Vieux Carré. In the glass, the Vieux Rectangle gave forth lemon and anise aromas that preceded a grape-driven sip. Finally, the brandy began the swallow followed by orange, anise, and clove notes.