Thursday, March 22, 2018

king of birds

1 oz Blended Scotch (Famous Grouse)
1/4 oz Smoky Single Malt (Laphroaig 10 Year)
1 oz Bonal Gentiane-Quinquina
1/2 oz Benedictine
1/4 oz Crème de Cacao (Tempus Fugit)
1 dash Absinthe (12 drops St. George)

Stir with ice, strain into a cocktail coupe, and garnish with a lemon twist.

Two Thursdays ago, a discussion about stirred tequila drinks reminded me of my mezcal-based Ask the Dust, and I thought about the interplay of Byrhh Quinquina and crème de cacao. I also wondered if it would work with another quinquina, namely Bonal, and whether the smoke was necessary. To keep the smoke element, I considered Scotch as a base spirit, especially since Scotch and Bonal have paired well in drinks like the Golden Dog and Sinister Street. Finally, Benedictine seemed like a good way to round out the drink, and for bitters, I returned to the Ask the Dust's absinthe.
For a name, I looked to my cocktail name list and felt that the REM song King of Birds matched the tone of the drink. In the glass, the King of Birds offered up bright lemon oil aromas that countered darker peat smoke ones. Next, malt and Bonal's grape danced on the sip, and the swallow paired Scotch and chocolate flavors that were followed by a bitter herbal finish.

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