Gilroy Cocktail

Gilroy Cocktail

1/6 Lemon Juice. (1/2 of 3/4 oz Lemon Juice)
1/6 French Vermouth. (1/2 of 3/4 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth)
1/3 Cherry Brandy. (3/4 oz Cherry Heering)
1/3 Dry Gin. (3/4 oz Plymouth Gin)
1 Dash Orange Bitters. (Regan’s)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

I liked this one. Seems like it might be one of those fairly decent cocktails saddled with an unfortunate name.

Sources indicate the Gilroy recipe had been published in one of Harry McElhone’s guides previous to the Savoy.

Surely not named after the town of Gilroy, Garlic capital of the world. Gilroy would have been at most a one horse fly speck on the map in the 1920s.

Though, hmmm… I see one of the first Anglos to settle in San Ysidro, (the Spanish settlement that would become Gilroy,) was a Scotsman named John Gilroy. As another Scotsman, perhaps the story intrigued McElhone enough to name a cocktail after him?

From wikipedia:

The ship departed from Portsmouth, England, made its way around Cape Horn and proceeded up the Pacific coast of the Americas, stopping at Spanish ports for supplies along the way. In January 1814, the Todd arrived at the Presidio of Monterey. During the visit, ordinary seaman John Gilroy (a Scotsman who had changed his name from John Cameron when he went to sea to avoid recognition) either jumped ship or, depending on the historical source, was left ashore to recover from scurvy. In any event he found his way to San Ysidro, converted to Roman Catholicism and became the first non-Spanish settler in Alta California legally recognized by the Spanish crown. More Americans and Europeans entered the region over time, but the area remained under the control of Spain (and after 1821, independent Mexico); Gilroy married the daughter of his employer and eventually became alcalde of the village himself.

When the annexation of California by the United States in 1848 was followed by the discovery of gold in the Sierra Nevada, the trickle of immigrants from the eastern states became frequent…On March 12, 1870 it was officially incorporated by the state legislature as the town of Gilroy (John Gilroy had died in 1869).

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.

Desert Healer Cocktail

Desert Healer Cocktail

The Juice of 1 Orange. (Juice 1 1/2 Honey Tangerine)
1 Glass Dry Gin. (2 oz No. 209 Gin)
1/2 Liqueur Glass Cherry Brandy. (3/4 oz Cherry Heering)

Shake well and strain into long tumbler and fill with Ginger Beer (Bundaberg).

In his book, “Barflies and Cocktails”, Harry McElhone notes that this cocktail, “Recipe (is) by Hon. H. Grayson.”

I’ve been meaning to try the Bundaberg Ginger Beer for a while. The Desert Healer seemed a fine excuse to pick up a 4 pack. Very natural tasting, if a bit sweeter than I expected.

With the Bundaberg, Heering, and Tangerine Juice, this cocktail ends up a bit on the sweet side for me. Quite tasty all the same. One interesting idea I had was, instead of shaking the Heering with the cocktail, to add it after shaking and then top with ginger beer. I bet you could get a nice Tequila Sunrise type effect. Will have to try that next time.

I suppose there is the question of Cherry Eau-de-Vie vs. Cherry Liqueur. I tried it both ways, and didn’t really care for the Kirsch version. Almost all the sweetness here comes from the juice and ginger beer. Swapping Heering for Kirsch didn’t make that much difference in sweetness and the Trimbach Kirsch I used brought out an unpleasant “Children’s Aspirin” flavor in the cocktail.

Anyway, after the not very good Kirsch version of this cocktail, which went down the sink, I still had a half a bottle of Ginger Beer. 2 oz of Rittenhouse Rye, a couple ice cubes, topped with cold Ginger Beer. C’mon. To me, it was tastier than either version of the Desert Healer. Rye and Ginger Beer, what a combination. Sometimes simpler is better.

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.

Cherry Blossom Cocktail

Cherry Blossom Cocktail

Cherry Blossom (6 people)

To a glass half full of cracked ice add a tablespoon of dry Curacao (dash senior Curacao of Curacao), one of Lemon Juice (1 TBSP fresh), one of Grenadine (Fee’s American Beauty Grenadine), 2 1/2 glasses of Cherry Brandy (1 oz Cherry Heering Liqueur) and 2 of brandy (1 oz Pierre Ferrand Ambre Cognac).

Shake thoroughly and serve very cold.

I’ll admit I increased the ratio of lemon here and decreased the Curacao, when re-doing the cocktail for 1 person.

It just seemed like it was going to be waaay too sweet if I left the ratio as is.

As made, it tastes pretty much like drinking a glass of cold cherry juice.

That’s not bad; but, it really doesn’t seem much like a cocktail. More like the missing link between the Sidecar and the Shirley Temple.

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.

Blood and Sand Cocktail

Blood and Sand Cocktail

1/4 Orange Juice (3/4 oz fresh Blood Orange Juice)
1/4 Scotch Whisky (3/4 oz Compass Box Asyla)
1/4 Cherry Brandy (3/4 oz Massenez Creme de Griotte)
1/4 Italian Vermouth (3/4 oz Cinzano Rosso Vermouth)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

This one is supposed to be named after the 1922 movie of the same name featuring Rudolph Valentino. The movie is the story of a bullfighter rising from a poor background only to be defeated by his own ambition.

As far as the cocktail goes, I think the Asyla is a bit too civilized for this company. The cocktail probably could have used a more assertive a Scotch. Also, while not syrupy, the Blood and Sand, especially made with the Massenez Creme de Griotte, is pretty sweet. If you make it yourself, I’d recommend picking up some Cherry Heering, as it is drier and definitely superior in this cocktail.

My use of blood orange wasn’t really planned. We have a couple kinds of oranges in the fridge, and I picked a small one thinking it was a valencia. When I split it, I realized it was a blood orange. Well, “apropos,” I thought. Also, these are very early season blood oranges, so still quite tart. The berry/musk doesn’t really start to overwhelm the fruit until later in the year.

Blood and Sand is another of those cocktails that had been on my list to try for quite a while. I usually have all the stuff for it in the house. It had just has never made it to the top of the list. First there’s the short list of regular cocktails then there’s the cool ones I read about in Gary Regan’s column or on the Internet… Any of those always seem more appealing than the BandS.

It certainly is an odd cocktail. Fairly mild on the alcohol front, not as sweet as a dessert cocktail, and neither dry nor aromatic enough to qualify as an aperitif or digestif. In a lot of ways, I’ve come to think of it as the blueprint for a lot of the modern, middle of the road cocktails.

Oh, and oddly, Patrick Gavin Duffy instructs this cocktail should be stirred, not shaken.

Here are a couple more links to much better writers than I tackling the mystery that is the Blood and Sand.

Professor gets some Education, Gary Regan, in a SF Chronicle Cocktailian column from 2003

Naming Names, Paul Clarke, from his Cocktail Chronicles blog in 2005

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.

Bass Wyatt

Bass Wyatt Cocktail
(5 People)

Beat up 4 (1 XL) Eggs, and add
4 Glasses of Dry Gin (4 oz Tanqueray Gin)
2/3 Glass of Cherry Brandy (2/3 oz Massenez Creme de Griotte)
1/2 Glass Lemon Juice (1/2 oz Lemon Juice)
4 Dashes Orange Bitters (2 Dashes Regan’s Orange Bitters)
1/2 Tablespoon of Powdered Sugar (1/2 teaspoon Caster sugar)
1 Tablespoon of Vanilla Flavouring (Dash Vanilla Extract)

Shake well and strain into medium-size glass. Grate nutmeg on top. Frost glass with castor sugar.

As usual with these “party” cocktails, I’m going with the 2 oz per “glass” theory and then cutting the recipe in half. The drink is actually pretty nice. Sort of an enriched version of a Singapore Gin Sling. I did skip frosting the rim of the glass. I wasn’t able to uncover any information about who or what “Bass Wyatt” might have been, but if you’re looking for a change-up from your usual weekend brunch Ramos Gin Fizz, this might be a good place to start.

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.

Size Matters

After Dinner

1/2 Cherry Brandy (1 oz Massenez Creme de Griotte)
1/2 Prunelle Brandy (1 oz homemade plum liqueur)
4 dashes lemon juice

Shake well and strain into a sherry glass.

After Dinner (Special)

1/2 Apricot Brandy (1 oz Vedrenne Liqueur de Abricot)
1/2 Curacao (1 oz Gran Gala Orange liqueur)

Shake well and strain into a cocktail glass.

There are lots of these “After Dinner” type cocktails in the “Savoy Cocktail Book.”

Generally, I try not to make them too large, so I avoid going into diabetic shock.

They look like they should be too sweet; but, some are fairly nice. Most are not particularly sweeter than your average carbonated beverage or after dinner fortified wine.

Probably the thing to do would be to serve them with a nice stiff cup of coffee.

Of these two, the plain old “After Dinner” was more enjoyable, with at least a touch of lemon leavening the liqueurs.

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.