Third Rail Cocktail (No. 2)

Third Rail Cocktail (No. 2)
1 Dash Absinthe. (1 dash Lucid Absinthe)
1/3 Bacardi Rum. (3/4 oz Montecristo White Rum)
1/3 Calvados or Apple Brandy. (3/4 oz Clear Creek Apple Brandy)
1/3 Brandy. (3/4 oz Pellehaut Armagnac)
Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

Simply splendid. Better than 11,000 volts.

Splendid?! There are words which come to mind when trying this all booze concoction, but splendid isn’t really one of them.

However, for me, it mostly reminds me of a band called The Rain Parade who released an album called, “Emergency Third Rail Power Trip,” in the early 1980s.

At the time I was living in Madison, Wisconsin, and listening to a lot of the listener sponsored station WORT.  One of my favorite DJs was a woman who called herself Michele K-Tel and claimed to work at a Buddy Nut Squirrel Nut Shoppe.  She hosted a show called Earwax and was extremely fond of bands in the so-called Paisley Underground“.  Initially, it took me a while to grasp her fondness for the neo-psychedelic music of bands like Rain Parade, The Three O’Clock, Plasticland, Green on Red, and The Long Ryders, but sooner or later, she had me singing along to the radio on songs like, “This Can’t Be Today” and “Jetfighter”.

Little did I know, a few years later, when I worked up the courage to volunteer at WORT as a Jazz DJ, that I would meet Michele K-Tel, we would hit it off, date, and run off to California with our giant piles of Albums, Tapes, and those new fangled Compact Discs.

Some times touching the Third Rail can be worth it.

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.

Third Rail Cocktail (No. 1)

Third Rail Cocktail (No. 1)
1 Dash White Mint. (1 dash Brizard Creme de Menthe)
1 Dash Curacao. (1 dash Brizard Orange Curacao)
1 Glass French Vermouth. (2 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth)
Shake (I stirred) well and strain into cocktail glass.

I had some small, idle, hope that this would somehow be another Chrysanthemum Cocktail, an overlooked, light classic.

Well, maybe, if you really like mint, but other wise, it is probably best to heed the sensible advice of many civilizations, and don’t touch the Third Rail.

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.

Third Degree Cocktail

Third Degree Cocktail

A peek into the always exciting night life of a cocktail blogger.

Third Degree Cocktail
2/3 Burrough’s Plymouth Gin. (3/4 oz Plymouth Gin, 3/4 oz Bols Genever)
1/3 French Vermouth. (3/4 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth)
4 Dashes of Absinthe. (1 tsp Greenway Distiller’s Absinthe Superior)
Shake well and strain into old-fashioned whisky glass.

We discussed the Third Degree a bit when we made the Fourth Degree Cocktail.

To recap, Robert Vermeire, in his book, “Cocktails: How to Mix Them,” considered both the Third and Fourth Degree cocktails to be variations on the Martinez. About the Third Degree he states, “The Third Degree is a Martinez Cocktail (Continental Style) with a dash of Absinthe and an olive, but 2/6 gill of Gin and 1/6 gill of French Vermouth should be used.”

The recipe for the Martinez (Continental Style) is as follows:

Fill the bar glass half full of broken ice and add:

2 dashes Orange Bitters
3 dashes of Curacao or Maraschino
1/4 gill of Old Tom Gin
1/4 gill of French Vermouth

Stir up well, strain into a cocktail-glass, add olive or cherry to taste, and squeeze lemon-peel on top. This drink is very popular on the Continent.

He uses the term “continental” to differentiate European style Martinez’ from the “English” style Martinez, which is as follows:

2 dashes of Orange Syrup
2 dashes of Angostura Bitters
1/4 gill of Plymouth Gin
1/4 gill of French Vermouth

The whole stirred up in ice in the bar glass, strained into a cocktail-glass with a lemon peel squeezed on top. Olive or Cherry according to taste.

Interesting that all of Vermeire’s Martinez call for French Vermouth!

In any case, since it uses Plymouth Gin, the Savoy Third Degree appears to be more closely based on the “English” Martinez, than the “Continental” version.

As we discussed earlier, there is some new evidence regarding the early 20th Century version of Plymouth Gin, in that it is said to have been “flavour[ed] with the wash of whisky distilleries”.  What that exactly means, will have to wait until I am able to taste a vintage sample, but until then, I am splitting the difference in the drinks which call for Plymouth Gin between Bols Genever and modern Plymouth Gin.

The fairly large pour of Absinthe in this cocktail, causes it to be the dominant element.  Luckily the malty character of the Genever brings a bit more interest to the party than simple, modern, GNS based Plymouth would.  While I favor the Fourth Degree slightly, this is also quite a tasty beverage!

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.

Tempter Cocktail

Tempter Cocktail
1/2 Port Wine. (1 oz Warre’s Warrior Port)
1/2 Apricot Brandy. (1 oz Blumme Marillen Apricot Eau-de-Vie)
Shake (I stirred) well and strain into cocktail glass.

I, uh, suppose I really should have made this with Apricot Liqueur. But that just sounded, well, like pancake syrup, and it was not yet dinner time when I made this cocktail.

So sue me, I swapped in Apricot Eau-de-Vie instead of liqueur.

Monty* doesn’t approve of all this attention going to cocktails instead of him, but he approves of the choice.

*You can blame the gratuitous dog photo on paystyle

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.

Temptation Cocktail

Temptation Cocktail
1 Piece Orange Peel.
1 Piece Lemon Peel.
2 Dashes Dubonnet. (5ml/1tsp Dubonnet Rouge)
2 Dashes Absinthe. (5ml/1tsp Greenway Distiller’s Absinthe Superior)
2 Dashes Curacao. (5ml/1tsp Brizard Curacao)
1 Glass Canadian Club Whisky. (2 oz Forty Creek 3 Grains Canadian Whisky)
Shake (I stirred) well and strain into cocktail glass.

Very similar to the Dandy Cocktail, (and with a similar method to the Newbury,) I do wonder where these cocktails which use citrus peels as an ingredient come from, as we have not yet identified a cocktail book as a source.

Interestingly, there’s a quote from the Hon. Wm (Cocktail) Boothby, Premier Mixologist, that addresses  this very issue:

Some of my recipes for the manufacture of cocktails order the dispenser to twist a piece of lemon peel into the glass in which the drink is to be served; in some establishments this is forbidden, the bartenders being ordered to twist and drop the peel into the mixing glass and strain the peel with the ice when putting the ice when  putting the drink into the mixing glass.  This is merely a matter of form, however, as the flavor is the same in both cases.

So it appears that in the cases of some establishments, rather than serving the peels in the drinks, they would be stirred in.

I don’t exactly agree with Boothby that the end result is the same. Stirring with the peel in the drink primarily flavors the drink with citrus oils, while squeezing over the cocktail accents the smell. I suppose for the best of both world’s you would stir with the peel in the drink, then squeeze over the finished cocktail, and discard. Whew! A lot of work!

A very tasty cocktail, the Temptation is one, like the Dandy, I feel could use a bit of a revival, certainly among those customers who like their cocktails Brown, Bitter, and Stirred. Well, unless they hate Absinthe/Anise, in which case, it might be best to stick with the Dandy.

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.

Tantalus Cocktail

Tantalus Cocktail
1/3 Lemon Juice. (3/4 oz Lemon Juice)
1/3 Brandy. (3/4 oz Pellehaut Armagnac)
1/3 Forbidden Fruit Liqueur. (3/4 oz Homemade Forbidden Fruit)
Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

Harry McElhone, in his book, “Barflies and Cocktails,” notes this is a “Recipe by Jack Bushby, Cecil Bar, Paris.”

Such a great name, this is one of those cocktails I keep hoping will be exceptional, yet I have not quite got it there yet, mostly, I believe, due to my lack of proper Forbidden Fruit Liqueur.

Long defunct, like their Creme Yvette, Forbidden Fruit was a proprietary liqueur made by Jaquin et Cie, a Philadelphia company. Allegedly the primary flavor elements of Forbidden Fruit were Pomelo, (aka Chinese grapefruit, jabong, lusho fruit, pompelmous, papanas, or shaddock,) an ancestor of the modern Grapefruit and honey.

Like Grapefruit, Pomelo come into season in the Winter, usually December or January and sticks around through March or April. Ripe Pomelo are incredibly fragrant, almost musky. My personal suspicion is that a truly great Pomelo liqueur would have to be distilled to capture that fragrance and leave behind the bitterness.

Sadly, I don’t have the option to distill, so I have to make do with infusion.

Doubly sadly, I missed Pomelo season this year by a week or two. They were all gone from the Alemany Farmers’ Market by the time I realized the Tantalus was coming up.

So, instead I used a couple different kinds of Grapefruit, one of which was a Pomelo cross, and sweetened it with Orange Blossom Honey. It’s OK, but I believe my weird compulsion to add ginger and spices may have been a mistake. Came out kind of weird and spicy hot. There is also a rather strong bitter aftertaste, which I am not entirely sure is inappropriate, though I think unavoidable in an infused liqueur.

Anyway, my choices and circumstances end up making this cocktail not entirely appealing, just kind of weird. I keep hoping the liqueur will settle down, I know the heat of the ginger will oxidize out, but am not sure what will happen with the Cardamom.

Well, until I get the whole Forbidden Fruit thing sorted out, you may want to instead make this luscious, (and also amusingly named,) creation of Audrey Saunders’, The Tantris Sidecar (recipe via Chuck Taggart’s Gumbopages):

The Tantris Sidecar

1 ounce V.S. Cognac (e.g. Hennessey or Courvoisier).
1/2 ounce Busnel Calvados.
1/2 ounce Cointreau.
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice.
1/2 ounce simple syrup.
1/4 ounce green Chartreuse.
1/4 ounce pineapple juice.
Granulated sugar.

Rub a little lemon around the outside of a chilled cocktail glass and dredge it in the sugar, leaving a nice even stripe of sugar around the rim of the glass.

Combine all liquid ingredients with cracked ice in a cocktail shaker and shake for 10-12 seconds. Strain into the sugar-rimmed glass.

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.

Tango Cocktail

Tango Cocktail
2 Dashes Curacao. (5ml/1tsp Brizard Orange Curacao)
The Juice of 1/4 Orange. (Juice and peel 1/4 Navel Orange)
1/4 French Vermouth. (1/2 oz Noilly Prat Dry Vermouth)
1/4 Italian Vermouth. (1/2 oz Carpano Antica Vermouth)
1/2 Dry Gin. (1 oz Tanqueray Dry Gin)
Shake well and strain into cocktail glass. (Garnish with long ribbon Orange Peel.)

Harry McElhone, the likely source for the recipe, formats it slightly differently in his book, “Barflies and Cocktails” : 1/6 Curacao; 1/6 Orange Juice; 1/3 Italian Vermouth; 1/3 Plymouth Gin. He also notes this is a, “Recipe by Harry, Bartender Palermo, Rue Fontaine, Paris.”

Hm, I hate to mention this to the Harrys, but isn’t the Tango the same cocktail as the Satan’s Whiskers?

Anyway, when we served the Satan’s Whiskers at Heaven’s Dog for our special Halloween menu last year, Erik Adkins had the insight to note, “Don’t over shake this drink.  Most of the ingredients have a low abv plus there is oj.  The drink should have a strong middle.”

That piece of advice has significantly improved my opinion of the Satan’s Whiskers as a cocktail. Well, that along with including a piece of orange peel in the shaker for added citrus ooomph.

I still think Satan’s Whiskers is a better name than it is a cocktail, per se, but for those occasions when a stiff drink might be a little too stiff, it is a nice option to have.

At Heaven’s Dog, we also sometimes make another rather amusingly named variation on this theme, “Satan’s Soul Patch”, which substitutes Bourbon for Gin and has a flamed orange peel as a garnish.

Don’t tell the manly men who usually order this drink, Satan’s Whiskers, or Satan’s Soul Patch that they are mostly drinking Vermouth and Orange Juice!

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.

Tanglefoot Cocktail

Tanglefoot Cocktail
1/6 Orange Juice. (1/2 of 3/4 oz Blood Orange Juice)
1/6 Lemon Juice. (1/2 of 3/4 oz Lemon Juice)
1/3 Bacardi Rum. (3/4 oz Barbancourt White Rum)
1/3 Swedish Punch. (3/4 oz Underhill Punsch)
Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

“T”! Wow! How many cocktails can be in T, U, V, X, Y, and Z? Well, actually, there are a fair number of cocktails in T and W, about an 100 more “Cocktails” before I hit the real final stretch of fizzes, juleps, cups and other “Fancy Drinks”. Still reason enough to “Smile”.

In his book, “Barflies and Cocktails,” Harry McElhone notes this is a “Recipe by Charly Kinney at Harry’s New York Bar, Paris.”

I only had a blood orange, so that’s what I had to use in the cocktail.

I was also feeling like a funkier rum would be a better complement to the Swedish Punch, so went with the Barbancourt.

Was definitely right about that!  This was quite a tasty formulation, with the tart early season blood oranges, lemon, Barbancourt, and Swedish Punch.  If you’ve got Swedish Punch, this would definitely be on my list of the top 2 or 3 cocktails to make with it.

Strangely, the best definition I can find for Tanglefoot is “cheap whiskey”.  I’m kind of guessing, this might be a drink that would result in your tangling up your dancing feet, that is, if you drank 3 or 4.

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.