Tuesday, September 12, 2017

avenue a

2 oz Four Roses Bourbon (Larceny)
3/4 oz Cynar
1/4 oz Tempus Fugit Crème de Cacao

Stir with ice, strain into a cocktail glass, and garnish with lemon oil.
Two Tuesdays ago, I wanted a simple bitter and brown cocktail to wind out my day. The one that caught my attention was a recipe that I had spotted on the ShakeStir site called the Avenue A by Jesse Peterson at the Last Word in San Diego. Jesse described, "A cool spin of a Manhattan meeting a Boulevardier." The drink name reminded me of two things with the first one being the summer of 1992 when I was living in Manhattan. People advised me back then to not venture into "Alphabet City," and when my wanderings in the East Village led me to the cusp at Avenue A, I distinctly recalled turning around. The second is one of my personal post-shift late night drinks that got dubbed FLAN at Loyal Nine. Standing for "Fred's Lazy Ass Night Cap," the trend began when guests at tables began asking servers for amari to end their dinner. Often servers would have me approach the table and explain our rather undersized collection, and I would mention some of the 50:50 mixes such as Cynar:Averna that we did just to increase the options. As soon as I mentioned that I could make what I drank at home, a 50:50 of Cynar and Bourbon with a dash of Angostura, the one request at a table turned into two or three. As I mentioned in my Cocktails in the Colonies talk summary, people often want to drink like either the chef or the bartender, so that combined with the elegance of the pairing sold this drink well.
F.L.A.N. (Fred's Lazy Ass Nightcap)
• 1 1/2 oz Four Roses Bourbon
• 1 1/2 oz Cynar
• 1 dash Angostura Bitters
Build in a rocks glass, add ice, and stir to mix and chill. At Loyal Nine, I added a lemon twist and straws; at home, I skipped all garnish and straws and utilized different Bourbons depending on mood.
The idea itself did not spawn from a Black Manhattan per se, but from a Camp Runamok 2015 ritual. I was in the Cynar cabin and we made it our tradition to do 50:50 mixes with other cabins (yes, even the Skyy Vodka cabin where it did alright with their peach-flavored spirit); our neighbors were in the Old Granddad Bourbon cabin, and that combination was fantastic! Here, in the Avenue A, the role of the Angostura Bitters for complexity was swapped for Tempus Fugit's glorious cacao liqueur. In the glass, the Avenue A gave forth bright lemon aromas over the darker notes swimming underneath. Next, rich caramel on the sip led into Bourbon along with Cynar melding with the chocolate to be less funky than usual. Over all, the Avenue A made for a delightful dessert-digestif hybrid cocktail.


robm said...

Fred, this looks great but I'd do it even better by using Old Grand Dad 100 proof bonded, the original bourbon used in your meuse. Thank you sir!

frederic said...

I've definitely done the 50:50 dash Ango with OGD Bonded and it's one of my favorites, but I do like to use up bottles to make room for new purchases (I had to stop myself from buying more Bourbons until I drank the old).

I do wish that I had used Four Roses in the Avenue A as the creator intended, but I overlooked that I reached for Larceny which I'm trying to finish up.