Saturday, February 6, 2016

four in hand

3/4 oz Old Grand Dad 114 Proof Bourbon (OGD Bonded)
3/4 oz Laird's Bonded Apple Brandy
1/4 oz Smith & Cross Rum
1/4 oz Green Chartreuse
1 tsp Cinnamon Syrup
1 tsp Vanilla Syrup

Stir with ice and strain into a rocks glass (I added fresh ice to the glass). Garnish with an orange twist.

Two Sunday nights ago, I decided upon the Four in Hand in the Death & Co. Cocktail Book. Scott Teague's 2013 drink was named after a tie knot akin to the Full Windsor. Moreover, four spirits in the mix aided the name, and it made for a rather stiff nightcap with all of the alcoholic ingredients weighing in between 100 and 114 proof.
The Four in Hand greeted the nose with an orange, apple, and Jamaican rum funk bouquet. On the palate, sweet apple on the sip gave way to Bourbon and funky rum on the swallow with a vanilla, herbal, and cinnamon finish. Overall, the Four in Hand was big, bold, and hot and was only bitters-shy of being an Old Fashioned in feel and structure. Surprisingly, the Green Chartreuse did not dominate the flavors here and was pushed back to the finish.

Friday, February 5, 2016


1/2 Scotch (1 1/2 oz Buchanan's 12 Year)
1/3 Grapefruit Juice (3/4 oz)
1/3 Dry Vermouth (3/4 oz Noilly Prat)
1 dash Ojen Bitters (1 barspoon Pernod Absinthe)

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. I added a grapefruit twist.
Two Saturdays ago, I found my way to the whiskey section of Pioneers of Mixing in Elite Bars: 1903-1933, and noted the Express. The Scotch and grapefruit pairing in this one reminded me of the Polly's Special where it worked rather well and much better than rye and grapefruit have in the past. Once built, the Express donated bright grapefruit oil aroma over lower smoke notes. Next, the sip offered dry malt, grapefruit, and wine, and swallow began with Scotch and ended with grapefruit and anise-herbal flavors.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

lady of singapore

1 1/2 oz Gold Puerto Rican Rum (El Dorado 5 Year)
1 oz Pineapple Juice
1/2 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Lopez Coconut Cream
1/2 o Cream or Half and Half
1 tsp Grenadine

Blend with 4 oz crushed ice and pour into a specialty glass (shake with ice and strain into a Tiki mug with crushed ice).
Two Fridays ago, I turned to Beachbum Berry's Sippin' Safari for my evening's postshift nightcap. There, I found a Piña Colada-like recipe from the Kon-Tiki Restaurant in Portland, Oregon, circa 1960 called the Lady of Singapore. Once prepared, it offered a pineapple aroma complemented by bright citrus oil notes from the lime shell garnish. Next, the sip was creamy lime, and the swallow shared rum, pineapple, and coconut flavors. No big surprises here, and the classic combination of rum, coconut, and pineapple did not disappoint.

town crier

1 oz Morin Selection Calvados
1 oz Barbancourt 8 Year Rhum
1/2 oz Punt e Mes
1/2 oz Benedictine
2 dash Peychaud's Bitters

Stir with ice and strain into a rocks glass with fresh ice. Garnish with a lemon twist.
Another of the new drinks at Loyal Nine got named after one of our East Cambridge Locals. There was a need for an apple brandy straight spirits drink, and I came up with this one that had a New Orleans feel akin to a Vieux Carré with aspects taken from Boston's own 1919 Cocktail. Instead of splitting the apple brandy with whiskey or agave which I have done in the past, I opted for an aged rum. I had been considering a Green Point combination of Punt e Mes and Yellow Chartreuse since those flavors both work well with Calvados, but I opted for Benedictine as the liqueur for it worked better here and did not get as lost as Yellow Chartreuse did. Finally, the name refers to a local who sometimes came in before we open asking for a job (everything from taking out our trash to cooking for us) or for free food, but had recently taken to coming in during service and yelling gibberish. Telling the town crier that he had to use his quiet voice scared him away, but we have this tribute here to remind us of this important job during Colonial history.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

life on mars

1 oz Berkshire Mountain Distillers Greylock Gin
1 oz Lillet Blanc
1/2 oz St. George Spiced Pear Liqueur
1/2 oz Campari

Stir with ice and strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with a lemon peel lightning bolt floated (an orange peel star floated would not be out of place either).
Two Fridays ago, our new cocktail list was going live but one of my creations still needed a name. In dismantling the Tarzan Boy from the soon-to-be old list, the passion fruit syrup was transferred to the Italian Stallion and the Campari needed a home. Finding that fruit liqueurs seem to modulate Campari in interesting and less bitter ways, I tinkered with St. George's Spiced Pear Liqueur and uncovered that it made for an excellent combination. Soon, gin and Lillet came into formation to make a variation on a classic Negroni. With the menu needing to be printed, two of the owners assisted me on the name. One proposed a David Bowie tribute. While I honed in on Moonage Daydream, another suggested Life on Mars which quite fit the color scheme here. The first few to be made the first two nights lacked a garnish for the fruit ingredients provided quite a pleasant nose, but bartender Tyler Murphy thought that a lemon lightning bolt would be perfect. Part of the sales of the Life on Mars goes to the Jimmy Fund cancer charity in honor of Bowie.


2/3 Gin (2 oz Bluecoat)
2 dash Orgeat (1/2 oz)
2 dash Dry Vermouth (1/2 oz Noilly Prat)
1 dash Absinthe (1/8 oz Obsello)
1 dash Orange Bitters (Angostura Orange)

Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. I added an orange twist.
Two Thursdays ago, my desires for a post-shift nightcap led me to Pioneers of Mixing at Elite Bars: 1903-1933. In the book's gin section, I spotted the Remembrance which reminded me of a gin Japanese Cocktail of sorts, and I decided to give it a go. Once mixed, it offered an orange, nutty, and herbal aroma. Next, the sip was rich and balanced with clean wine notes, and the swallow was a complex combination of gin botanical, nutty orgeat, herbal vermouth and absinthe, and orange bitters. Interestingly, the photo I took on my phone (most blog photos are from a camera except from the ones I take at work) and put on Instagram was one of the most popular ones that I have posted.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

chester rapkin

1 oz Sloe Gin (Atxa Patxaran)
1 oz London Dry Gin (Beefeater)
3/4 oz Campari
1/4 oz St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram

Stir with ice and strain into a rocks glass with ice. Garnish with an orange twist.

Two weeks ago after a fill-in Wednesday shift, I flipped to the nightcap section of Food & Wine: Cocktails 2015. There I found Jeremy Oertel's take on a Negroni for the Sotto Grand Hotel's menu called the Chester Rapkin. Rapkin was the urban planner who coined the abbreviation SoHo, and this tribute paired sloe gin and Campari like the Red Sea did.
The Chester Rapkin donated a bright orange oil aroma that countered the darker notes stemming from the sloe liqueur. Next, the sloe's dark berry continued on into the sip, and the swallow was rather complex with gin botanicals, Campari bitter and orange peels, and Patxaran's berry and coffee. Finally, the swallow ended with an allspice finish.

Monday, February 1, 2016

white horse

1/2 White Horse Whisky (1 1/4 oz Buchanan's 12 Year)
1/2 Dry Vermouth (1 1/4 oz Noilly Prat)
Good dash Benedictine (1/2 oz)
1 dash Angostura Bitters

Stir with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.
Two Tuesdays ago, I turned to the 1937 Café Royal Cocktail Book and found a dry Bobby Burns-like recipe created by E. Goodall called the White Horse. While the name White Horse was a tribute the Scotch brand utilized, the combination was very similar to the Brainstorm in the 1934 Boothby book with a lot more dry vermouth and the addition of bitters. Once built, the White Horse shared Islay-like peat smoke combining with herbal aromas to make an almost medicinal note. A malty sip with some body from the Benedictine transitioned into a smoky Scotch swallow with minty, chocolate, and spice elements.

missionary impossible

1 1/2 oz El Dorado 3 Year Rum
1/2 oz Lime Juice
1/2 oz Apricot Liqueur (Marie Brizard)
1/2 oz Honey Syrup
1/4 oz Pineapple Juice
3 sprig Mint
1 dash Fee's Peach Bitters
1 dash Absinthe (Butterfly)

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a mint leaf.

Monday two weeks ago, I began flipping through the Fee Brothers 2015 Fall Cocktails book that Luc gave me for it had featured my Final Countdown using their molasses bitters. One of the drinks that caught my eye was crafted by Backbar's Kobie Ali as a riff on Don the Beachcomber's Missionary's Downfall called the Missionary Impossible. Like Duggan McDonnell's Missionary's Downfall variation, the Missionary Impossible utilized peach bitters instead of peach liqueur. However, while the variation utilized simple syrup, this riff went in the complementary apricot liqueur route.
The Missionary Impossible presented a mint, anise, and floral aroma. The combination of lime and honey filled the sip, and the swallow offered rum, apricot, and pineapple like Charles H. Baker's Hotel Nacional Special. Finally the drink finished with minty, anise, and peach notes.