Sunday, April 8, 2018

gallivanting in golden gai

1 1/4 oz Bourbon (Old Grand-Dad Bonded)
1 1/4 oz Cognac (Courvoisier VS)
1/4+ oz Maraschino (Luxardo)
1/4+ oz Orgeat
1 dash Angostura Bitters
1 dash Orange Bitters (Regan's)

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

On the walk home from work two Sunday nights ago, I began thinking about ingredient combinations that might work well together in a novel recipe. One that popped into my head was the orgeat-Maraschino duo that worked great in Tiki drinks like the Gold Cup but also worked in more standard drinks like the Genever Daisy. The idea of a mashup made me think about simple classics that utilized these two sweeteners; the two that called out were the Japanese Cocktail from Jerry Thomas' 1862 How to Mix Drinks and the Fancy Free from Crosby Gaige's 1941 Cocktail Guide and Ladies' Companion. With both drinks being spirit, sweetener, and bitters in an Old Fashioned style, I merged the two and utilized the Fancy Free's Angostura in place of the Japanese Cocktail's Boker's Bitters.
For a name, I looked to Japan and thought about famous neighborhoods. One that stuck out was the Golden Gai region that is jam packed with tiny bars holding sometimes fewer than 10 seats each. In including the Fancy Free theme, I took an alliterative route and dubbed it Gallivanting in Golden Gai. In the glass, the lemon oil brightened the Cognac and nutty nose. Next, a creamy sip led into first Bourbon mingling with brandy and second a hybrid of Maraschino and orgeat generating an earthy cherry flavor on the swallow followed by an orange and spice finish.

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