Saturday, November 25, 2023

gaby des lys

1 jigger Dry Gin (2 oz Beefeater)
1/2 pony Orgeat (1/2 oz)
1 tsp or less Absinthe (1/2 tsp Kübler)
[1 dash Angostura Bitters (not in the original recipe or the photo but added after a sip or two)]

Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.
In an online set of flashcards, I spotted a modern take on the Gaby des Lys, and I hunted down the original in Charles H. Baker Jr.'s 1939 book The Gentleman's Companion: Around the World with Jigger, Beaker, & Glass. The recipe was a pre-Prohibition number from New York City named after the French singer, dancer, and actress Gaby Deslys, and Baker offered up the tribute, "Gaby the lovely, Gaby the delightfully mad, Gaby the free soul who died too young and gave a fortune in pearls to the Paris poor!" Modern versions reduce the absinthe and add Angostura Bitters; after making it without Angostura, I added a dash in for some needed depth akin to the Japanese Cocktail and Army & Navy Cocktail since the absinthe alone was not cutting it. In the glass with the bitters included, the Gaby des Lys performed for the nose with earthy, nutty, floral, and cinnamon aromas. Next, a creamy sip danced into gin, almond, anise, allspice, and clove flavors on the swallow. While the bitters did add spice, it also added some structure to make the combination seem less flabby and more dimensional.

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