Hop Toad Cocktail
1/4 Lemon Juice. (1/2 oz Lemon Juice)
3/4 Apricot Brandy. (1 1/2 oz Zwack Barack Palinka)
Shake well and strain into cocktail glass. (Lemon Peel.)
I have to admit I’ve always been a bit curious about this cocktail, but never really quite had the courage to make it for myself.
Mr. David Wondrich has pointed out in his books and the esquire drinks database that the proper base spirit for this is absolutely not apricot liqueur, but instead an apricot eau-de-vie, like the fiery Hungarian Zwack Barack Palinka.
To quote Mr. Wondrich from his amusing esquire writeup.
Weighing all the evidence, though, the philosophy of the Hop Toad seems to be to allow the lime juice to fall tart on the tongue, without making the result so sour as to be undrinkable. To create, in other words, a state of dynamic tension by placing the drink in a condition of carefully calibrated imbalance. What that has to do with amphibians, we don’t know.
Definitely in the unsweetened school of the Bennett or Bronx Terrace, the Hop Toad is more of a restorative tonic than what folks now consider a cocktail. Make it small, shake it well, and drink it while it is still very cold. It will wake up your taste buds and get the blood flowing to your brain again.
This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.