Shake with ice and strain into glass (or honey jar).
This was a cocktail I made for A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder. “Honey shack” was a line delivered by a beekeeping cousin of the main protagonist in showing off his hive. Thus the honey elements plus all the things that go well with, floral and sour.
It’s one of those that can easily surprise and sting you.
Shake with ice then strain into glass. Garnish with lemon twist (not expressed) and candied ginger.
Playing with sumac here. No rhyme or reason beyond what tasted good. Initially it used bourbon, but I found the Scotch played better. I think you could experiment with region. Everything else, including the ginger, just plugged in.
dash of King Floyd’s Scorched Pear and Ginger bitters
Shake with ice then strain into glass. Garnish with lemon (express oil optional).
I have had some umeshu liqueur, which comes from Japanese plums, for a while, but hadn’t yet utilized them in a cocktail. I went with a gin in the end, but think this could work equally well or even better with Japanese whisky. The ginger and lemon gave some spice and acid, and the bitters reigned in the sweetness of the ume, which I wanted to make sure had lots of presence.
The name had an interesting development. Originally I had a name of Indigo Kimono, but as you can see from the pic that wasn’t going to work. In researching ume, I mistakenly looked at umeboshi, which is the pickled version of the plum. Umeboshi are tsukemono, the larger group of pickled fruits and veggies. Tsu Kimono seemed too good of a coincidental name, and tsu means “one” in Japanese (though I don’t think you’d put these together in this way actually).
Then I found out that tsukimono means “The Possessing Thing” from the Kanji “tsuki” meaning “possession” and “mono” meaning “thing”. This is a god or monster that has possessed and borrowed the body of a person.
A drink named after a spirit that possesses you? Seems appropriate.
Stir all but Prosecco over ice, then strain into coupe. Top with Prosecco.
I’m not a huge fan of any sparkling wine, but occasionally wind up with a bottle. I wanted to utilize it here with a gin a la a French 75, but without citrus had to improvise. The result I felt gave enough of each component without overpowering one another.
Hence the name. Not to put my thumb on the scale, but I like the way it leaned. Had the proper weight.
0.25 oz. Leopold Bros. Michigan Tart Cherry liqueur
0.25 oz. ginger liqueur (King’s)
dash of orange bitters (Regans)
Stir with ice and strain into glass. Garnish with cherries and candied ginger.
I wanted to riff on the classic Scotch and liqueur prototype you see in the Rusty Nail or Godfather. In the end, instead of their simplicity, I ended with a mix of liqueurs and a bitter, but I was pretty happy with the result.
Took a while and iterations for the name. But the the cherry and red color of the drink finally delivered. Slàinte Mhath!
Stir with ice and strain into coupe. Garnish with a spritz of absinthe.
Brandy. Fruit. Sweet. Done.
Went all around the block a few times for a name on this one. This perhaps is not the most original, but it suited it, as brandy was the focus (though in the song she lays whiskey down). My life, my love and my lady.
I wasn’t sure exactly what to do with the spiced gin. It almost seems like a spiced rum if your eyes were closed. This was a long experiment to hone in on this combination, which gives an interesting and piney spiced genever. Plum? No idea, but it worked.
I was happy when the name came to me, and it seemed pretty perfect. And no animals were harmed in the making of this drink.
I feel breaking this one down is unnecessary. Using the Indian rum as a base I just leaned into the spiced liqueurs, spirits and bitters in my bar. The Malabar has warm spices of cinnamon, cardamom and clove along with orange. The bitters have cherry, clove and cinnamon. You get the idea.
The name might not be the most original, but it is fitting. Why stray from the path?