Shake with ice and strain into coupe. Spritz with absinthe.
I don’t make enough with akvavit (or aquavit), and I really should try more. Think gin with caraway in place of juniper (way oversimplification). So here was one recent attempt, playing with the combination of the thyme flavored liqueur. I needed the lemon for acid, and against this had to bolster the sweet, so I reached for the creme de menthe as I felt this was a nice combination with the lemon and thyme that didn’t detract from the herbaceousness of the akvavit. Finally for a bitter component I added the Kina which rounded things nicely.
The name was pretty immediate (a rarity), coming from the Jim Croce song. I know the first thing I want to do. Drink this.
I really like Fernet Branca, but there are so few traditional cocktails that use it. Toronto and Hanky Panky, then you’re pretty much done. I wanted something to show off the Fernet and give a nice final drink for an evening. The mint liqueur pairs well with it, and the sloe gin is strong enough to balance it with sweet and tart. The base of gin certainly works with the sloe gin liqueur and offers botanical notes to play with the Fernet.
Nice, four simple ingredients. Strong, Fernet-forward taste. Puts me in the perfect place to end a night.
I’ve had the Wigle Landlocked, a distilled mead that lies somewhere between rum and brandy, for a while and wanted to figure out something tasty with it. Although it might sound sweet, it is not, so I reached for the spiced pear, one of my favorites. It still needed some sweetness, so I thought the honey Scotch liqueur Drambouie would enhance the flavors already there. Finally, I added the Cocchi for some brightness and bitterness.
I feel the name doesn’t really need an explanation. Just having pun.
Stir with ice and strain into glass. Garnish with cherry.
I love Art in the Age’s offerings just for their unique flavors. However, I sometimes have their bottles linger on my shelf since I find they can easily take over any cocktail (that was certainly the case with Root). And so as much as I enjoyed the cinnamon-ginger-vanilla bite of the liqueur (which does weigh in at 80 proof) I didn’t mix with it often.
So came this cocktail, which I made to see how I could harness Snap (and maybe clear some space on my shelf). The rye is a strong partner here. Make sure to use 100 proof or more. To that I added the vermouth for additional sweetness and some bitterness, then the Leopold Bros. added some sweet acidity. Benedictine grounded the drink for me and tied in to the spices from the Snap. The bitters, I admit, were just a recent acquisition that I wanted to try, but I did feel the allspice played well with the Snap as well.
This is a cocktail that has some heft to it, but I did find it went down smoothly, so be careful. Thus, en garde!
0.25 oz. smoky and/or peaty Scotch (Talisker Dark Storm)
0.25 oz. cinnamon syrup
dash of Bitters, Old Men Chipotle Single Malt bitters
Stir with ice and strain into coupe.
I had just recently picked up Xila, with its spicy pineapple agave profile, and wanted to try it in a mezcal cocktail. I started with Vida as a base, but found in my finished drink I craved a more distinct mezcal sip so added a half ounce of Leyendas Puebla as well.
Xila is sweet, but not overly, so I added Giffard’s Caribbean Pineapple to enhance what was present in Xila, and the cinnamon syrup brought additional spice and sweetness. The chipotle bitters from Bitters, Old Men tied in with the spice, and I found the peatiness a welcome quality, so boosted this with a bit of Scotch. The result is spicy, sweet, smoky stirred pineapple and agave drink.
A kiva is sunken, round ceremonial chamber in a pueblo. I had believed this to be also the name for the adobe ovens, but looking into it further see nothing supporting that other than captions for a number of online images, which do refer to kiva ovens. Any definition I find for these ovens, however, identifies them as hornos, and ovens never really played a part in structural kiva.
All that said, Kiva made me think of smoke and earth and mezcal, and Horno wasn’t as appealing a name, so there it is. Salud.
The Bitter Giuseppe cocktail is nice low ABV cocktail with a Cynar base, so as you might imagine and as the name implies, it’s rather bitter. I like it, but wanted to riff on it with a reduction of the bitter Cynar, using rum as a base. With less bitter I didn’t require as much lemon to cut it, but there did need to be some sweetness added. The Stirrings espresso liqueur, which I bought years ago and have never seen since, has a nice sweet and bitter balance that fit well.
Well, I don’t know about Giuseppe, but I like it better.
A nice, sweet yet subtle tipple that adds plum to the rhubarb and ginger liqueur with gin as a base. The Lillet brightens the drink and adds a note of bitterness, which the orange bitters enhance.
A plumb line was used to measure ocean depths by sailors, and it seemed a shame not to take advantage of a good (bad?) pun. Perhaps I should have waited for a plum tiki drink, but that ship has now sailed.
Just picked up Tanqueray’s latest offering and really enjoyed the citrus addition. I thought almond would pair nicely with the orange, then added a little floral sweetness as well. The Lillet Blanc brought some bitter brightness, joined by the orange bitters. It still needed some acid, but instead of adding some miniscule lemon I opted for the lactart, and that’s all that it needed.
Do I need to explain the name? No, I don’t. Just drink up and enjoy.