Where There’s Smoke

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Where There’s Smoke

  • 2.0 oz. bonded apple brandy (Laird’s)
  • 1.0 oz. Benedictine
  • 0.25 oz. peated Scotch (Caol Ila 12)
  • 0.25 oz. Fire Cider
  • dash of Angostura
  • dash of Smoke Gets in Your Eyes bitters

Stir with ice and strain over large cube in a tumbler.

This is one I’ve been sitting on for a couple of years. I was given the apple cider vinegar Fire Cider and challenged to do something with it. I really like it, so it wasn’t much a challenge, though it does tend to take over whatever you put it into. So I reached for strong or powerful flavors that would stand up with it — the bonded brandy and the Scotch. My mainstay Benedictine, probably in a larger portion than I’ve used in any other drink, really makes the drink for me, and for my bitters I just had to use the smoky Smoke Gets in Your Eyes from Bitters, Old Men.

This is definitely a slow sipper. With bite. Cigar is optional.

Pretty Priest with a Cherry on Top

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Pretty Priest with a Cherry on Top

Stir with ice and strain into coupe. Garnish with cherry.

Cherry and vanilla. That’s where I started with this one. Bourbon seemed a good fit, but these alone were just too sweet, even with the tartness of the cherry. The Benedictine added the necessary depth, with the bitters pulling it all together.

Thanks to this name goes to Andrew Child, master of puns.

Fall Forward

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Fall Forward

Stir with ice and strain into coupe. Garnish with toasted cinnamon stick.

I wanted to make something with Short Path’s Autumn Gin offering which features some seasonal additions like cinnamon and orange. It seemed appropriate to add spiced pear and some cinnamon syrup for sweetness, then tart cherry for a bright acidity. For bitters I reached for Dale Degroff’s pimento bitters and the Kina which helped to round things out.

The title comes from my semiannual confusion over the Daylight Savings mnemonic “Spring forward, fall back.” I didn’t grow up with Daylight Savings Time, having spent my youth in Arizona, so I only learned that once I moved east in my 20s, and I find it useless for me. Since it works just as easily as “Fall forward, spring back” I still have to look up twice a year which way the clocks go. Perhaps my misnamed drink will help me.

Bluegrass Grog

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Bluegrass Grog

  • 1.5 oz. Bourbon (Basil Hayden’s)
  • 0.5 oz. Jamaican rum (Appleton’s Reserve)
  • 0.5 oz. Benedictine
  • 0.5 oz. Olorosa sherry (Lustau)
  • 0.25 oz. Gran Classico

Stir with ice. Strain into coupe. Garnish with orange twist.

Here’s the first in a series of drinks that are not show or theme related, just me experimentng with flavors. I’m sure this one came from playing with sherry, since it’s not an ingredient I have on hand often. You get its nuttiness coming through on this one against the underlying sweetness in the other ingredients and the bitterness in the amaro. Originally this was bourbon only, but I needed something to round it out and I found the rum gave just the right depth.

I also discovered with this cocktail I am absolutely horrible at naming these if the name comes last (I would say 90% of my drinks have thus far started with the name). So I reached out on social media for suggestions. I got a ton of responses, and I have to thank Terry Hamilton for the chosen entry, Bluegrass Grog. Thanks, Terry!

Hi-dee-hi and Whoop-de-doo

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Hi-dee-hi and Whoop-de-doo

  • 1.0 oz. overproof rum (Plantation)
  • 0.75 oz. banana liqueur (Giffard)
  • 0.75 oz. cinnamon syrup
  • 0.5 oz. Dove Tale rum
  • 0.5 oz. Campari
  • 0.5 oz. lime juice

Shake with ice and strain into coupe. Garnish with a lime wedge.

For a second 42nd Street drink I took one of my tropical variations using banana and cinnamon with Campari to provide some bitterness against the line’s acid. Again, nothing to do with the show, but perhaps with a couple of these you’ll be feeling hi-de-hi and whoop-dee-do as well.

Hip Hooray and Ballyhoo

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Hip Hooray and Ballyhoo

  • 1.5 oz. silver tequila (Fortaleza)
  • 0.5 oz. Yellow Chartreuse
  • 0.5 oz. lemon juice
  • 0.25 oz. espresso liqueur (Stirrings)
  • 0.25 oz. creme de cacao (Tempus Fugit)
  • 0.25 oz. Kina L’Avion d’Or

Shake with ice and strain into coupe. Garnish with a lemon wedge.

Here is the first of two cocktails shaken up for a production of 42nd Street at the Umbrella Stage Company in Concord, MA. Full disclosure, these drinks are ones I was already tinkering with prior to the show and have absolutely nothing to do with 42nd Street itself. So I chose a lyric from Lullaby of Broadway that really needs no thematic tie — it just describes a drink I want to have!

Here is a tequila base with chocolate and coffee to sweeten, which I always like as a combination. The chartreuse offers some herbal notes to play with the grassy tequila as well as the Kina, which contributes some additional bitterness to the coffee. The lemon adds the needed brightness.

Goodnight, baby. Let’s call it a day.

Pour Oh Pour

At pirate Scrimshaw’s request, a cocktail for the crew of the Crimson Star:

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Pour Oh Pour

  • 1.0 oz. Plantation pineapple rum
  • 0.5 oz. Aged rum (Bacardi 8)
  • 0.5 oz. Oloroso sherry
  • 0.25 oz. Clement Mahini Coco
  • 0.25 oz. Clement Creole Shrub
  • 0.25 oz. allspice dram
  • dash of Angostura

Stir with ice and strain into coupe. Eyepatch is optional.

A pineapple, coconut and orange all make brief appearances in our Pirates of Penzance show. Rum and sherry were the given. Drink up, me hearties!

Monkey’s Cuss

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Monkey’s Cuss

  • 1.5 oz. spiced rum (Bayou)
  • 1.0 oz. Plantation pineapple rum
  • 1.0 oz. banana liqueur (Tempus Fugit)
  • 0.5 oz. allspice dram (St. Elizabeth)
  • 0.5 oz. vanilla liqueur (Giffard)
  • 0.5 oz. cream of coconut
  • 0.5 oz. lemon juice
  • 0.25 oz. lime juice
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters

Shake with ice and strain into glass over crushed ice.

Here’s a bonus Billy Elliot drink that I threw together at our party using ingredients on hand. I had the name, so purposely brought along the creme de banane. Everything else was impromptu, but really worked in the final drink. No monkeys were harmed in the making of the cocktail, though some feelings were hurt. Those monkeys can swear.

Show You Me Hoo-hoo

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Show You Me Hoo-hoo

  • 1.75 oz. spiced rum (Bayou)
  • 0.5 oz. grapefruit shrub
  • 0.5 oz. cinnamon syrup
  • 0.25 oz. allspice dram (St. Elizabeth)
  • 0.25 oz. lime juice
  • 2 dashes hopped grapefruit bitters

Shake with ice then strain into coupe.

Final Billy Elliot drink, and my tiki contribution. The shrub and cinnamon give it a nice bite. And it is probably my favorite name I have given one of my cocktails. Though the cocktail is all you get.

Esqueer

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Esqueer

  • 1.5 oz. London Dry gin
  • 0.5 oz. pamplemousse rose liqueur (Combier)
  • 0.5 oz. Aperol
  • 0.25 oz. Pavan
  • 0.25 oz. lemon juice

Shake with ice then strain into coupe.

Billy Elliot drink #3. Still love the pamplemousse rose liqueur. Everything else was just invited to play with it. The title comes from a line in the show where Billy misreads “esquire.” Hold for laugh. Now drink.