1 1/2 oz. Drambuie
juice of 1/2 lemon
4 oz. hot water
Strain the lemon juice to remove pulp, add Drambuie and fill with hot water to desired dilution.
Another incredibly simple one, but just the thing for a damp and chilly day. The above is a combination of CocktailDB’s entries for the Hot Drambuie Toddy and Falkland Island Warmer. Oddly enough, Google has little to say in English on the subject — the drink appears on German and Japanese sites in the main. The two are combined here because, as one will see from the respective recipes, the differences are merely of quantity (more Drambuie and lemon in the toddy). Proportions be damned, I co-opt the name Falkland Island Warmer because it’s just more prosaic than the pedestrian Hot Drambuie Toddy. Drambuie itself is a honeyed whiskey, and as such unless the lemon is particularly sour, the additional sweetening (called for in the FIW) is overkill.
Update (09/10/05): Further research reveals “Falkland Island Warmer” to be Victor Bergeron’s name for the concoction, though he doesn’t lay claim to devising the drink itself. From Trader Vic’s Book of Food & Drink (1946):
A very charming and prim little old lady gave me the recipe for this drink many years ago. She called me over to her table, where she and a party of elderly women were having dinner, and told me about a drink the natives in the Falkland Islands used to make when they were cold and tired and in need of a stimulant. As she had a particularly un-romantic name, I named the drink the Falkland Island Warmer.
3 oz. cachaça
1/2 lime (large)
1 Tbsp. sugar
Cut lime into quarters
Place in bottom of 6 – 8 oz. glass with sugar and muddle well.
Fill with crushed ice, followed by cachaça. Stir.
Cachaça is very much its own beverage — distilled from fermented fresh sugar cane juice, it’s related to rum, but often called a brandy. There is a wide range of qualities — in Brazil, cachaça has historically been a proletarian drink, but a premium market is the rise. Perhaps the most commonly available brand in the US is Pirassununga Cachaça 51, a middle-of-the-road industrially produced cachaça. I wouldn’t care to drink it neat, but it has a peppery, tequila-like quality that makes Brazil’s gift to cocktails, the caipirinha, more like a margarita than its rummy relative, the daiquiri.
Caipirinhas are quite the trendy tipple these days, and they’re fast becoming a favorite of mine as well. Citric, icy-cold and spicy-sweet, they’re not particularly suited to drizzly 50°F March evenings, but I’ll be laying in a respectable supply of cachaça and limes come summertime. There’s a fairly broad variation in recipes … most call for a whole lime, which I find excessive if you’re using large, lemon-sized fruit. The volumes of sugar, cachaça and ice vary as well. The inference one should draw from this is that cachaça is delicious when served on the rocks with lime and sugar.
1 oz. London dry gin
1 oz. Campari
1 oz. sweet vermouth
stir with ice and strain into a cocktail glass.
garnish with orange twist (burnt or otherwise)
The Negroni is a beautiful translucent ruby, walking a fine line between extravagance and elegance. Campari and vermouth counterbalance one another perfectly, with the gin largely serving to add volume and proof while reducing the viscosity a bit. The Campari sounds the dominant note, and I like it just fine. According to cocktailtimes.com (and others — it’s a popular legend), we have Count Camillo Negroni of Florence to thank for this happy update to the Americano. One should apparently garnish the Negroni with a bit of “burnt orange” — this involves holding a lit match over the glass while expressing the oil from a twist of peel. Might be worth attempting, though the folks at Campari don’t mention it in their recipe for the Negroni. Then again, they would have one serve it in an old fashioned glass on the rocks, which seems an injustice considering how splendidly the Negroni displays up on a stem.
Do use London Dry — Plymouth or Hendrick’s would be a waste — since Campari and sweet vermouth overwhelm a delicate gin’s subtleties. You could probably even substitute vodka without noticing too much, but I can’t possibly advocate it. Leave the Negroni alone unless there’s no gin in the house, and then please don’t mention the transgression to others, lest it become practice.
If you haven’t a bottle of Campari to hand, acquire one and stir up a Negroni. It’s simplicity itself to produce, deliciously bitter-sweet, deceptively drinkable, and, at 56°, will see you into a happy place more rapidly than you might have thought. Suitable for any respectable hour and as an anodyne to any weather but the most inclement.
1 1/2 oz. pisco
1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 egg white
1 dash Angostura bitters
Shake well with ice and strain.
This Pisco Sour is a lovely, silver, frothy affair thanks to the egg white. It’s mighty refreshing as well — not at all too sweet. Don’t omit the Angostura unless you absolutely must, as it adds a welcome complexity to the drink. The recipe above is from CocktailDB. Other recipes call for making a blended drink of it, but as with the Ramos Gin Fizz, I prefer to shake-and-strain for a shorter, smoother, less watered-down drink. I also just don’t like blenders much. They harsh my mellow.
I made the above with Alto del Carmen Reservado, a Chilean pisco. Note that Peru lays claim to originating pisco and there’s a bit of kerfuffle between the two countries regarding just whose traditional beverage it is and where Chilé gets off calling their stuff pisco, what with the eponymous city of Pisco being Peruvian and all.