Sleepy Head Cocktail

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Sleepy Head Cocktail
1 Glass Brandy. (2 oz Germain-Robin Fine Alambic Brandy)
1 Piece of Orange Peel.
4 Leaves of Fresh Mint.
Fill long (iced) tumbler with Ginger Ale (Sprecher Ginger Ale).

Over the last year or so, we’ve been making a fair number of Sleepy Head Cocktails at our Savoy Cocktail Book nights at Alembic Bar. We’ve developed this slightly elaborate presentation, with the horse’s neck of orange peel and sprigs of mint, just because we’ve got them around. Plus, it makes the cocktail look cool.

In fact, if there is any problem at all with the Sleepy Head, it is that it is far, far too easy to drink quickly. Tasting like a vaguely boozy glass of ginger ale, it is no problem to slurp these down like soda pop.

Next thing you know, your head is tilting sleepily towards your companion’s shoulder, and who knows whatever might happen after they help you to your cab.

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.

Seventh Heaven Cocktail (No. 2)

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Seventh Heaven Cocktail (No. 2)

1 Tablespoonful Grapefruit Juice. (1 Tablespoon freshly squeezed Grapefruit Juice)
1/4 Maraschino. (1/2 oz Luxardo Maraschino)
3/4 Dry Gin. (1 1/2 oz Beefeater’s Gin)

Stir well and place a sprig of green Mint on top.

The Seventh Heaven (No. 2) is quite similar to the Colonial Cocktail, with the Grapefruit and Maraschino ratio inverted.  And, as such, boy is it pretty awful.  I had hope there would be some magic between the bitterness of the grapefruit and the funk of the Maraschino.  The Colonial is, after all, a pretty tasty cocktail.  But, unless you really like a Maraschino funky, sweet, bitter grapefruit, after dinner cocktail, I’d say avoid the Seventh Heaven (No. 2).

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.

Sensation Cocktail

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Sensation Cocktail.
3 Dashes Maraschino. (7.5ml Luxardo Maraschino)
3 Sprigs Fresh Mint. (3 Fresh sprigs Kentucky Colonel Mint, from backyard)
1/4 Lemon Juice. (3/4 oz Lemon Juice)
3/4 Dry Gin. (1 1/2 oz Beefeater’s Gin)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass. (Garnish with spanked mint tip.)

EDIT. Note the amounts for the ingredients in this drink should have been 7.5ml Maraschino, 3 Sprigs Mint, 1/2 oz Lemon Juice, 1 1/2 oz Gin.

Robert Vermeire notes, in his book “Cocktails: How to mix them”, that this is a “Recipe by James Berkelmans, Paris.”

I’ve actually always been fond of the “Sensation Cocktail”. Short, sharp, and tart, it also has a pretty hilarious name, sounding like it relates to some sexual accessory. The “Sensation” is really Aviation Cocktail, with mint in place of Creme de Violette. For whatever reason, it just doesn’t quite have the “magic” of an Aviation. Making it for modern drinkers, I usually throw a quarter to a half an ounce of simple in there just to take a bit more of the edge off the tartness of the lemon, but even so, I find few people who really appreciate it. An example of a good, but slightly pedestrian cocktail. Not as tasty as many of its close relatives.  Heck, Jeffrey Morganthaler has practically made a career out of a version of this drink made with simple syrup instead of Maraschino. Well, that, his scintillating wit, boyish good looks, and, most importantly, stylish neck wear.

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.

Mint Cocktail

Mint Cocktail

Mint Cocktail
(6 People)
Soak a few sprigs of fresh mint for two hours in a glass and a half of White Wine (3/4 oz Les Domains Tatins, 2007, Quincy/Domaine du Tremblay). Add half a glass of Crème de Menthe (1/4 oz Brizard Creme de Menthe), 2 Glasses of Gin (1 oz Broker’s Gin) and 1 1/2 glasses of White Wine (3/4 oz Les Domains Tatins, 2007, Quincy/Domaine du Tremblay). Ice and shake (or stir if you prefer) thoroughly. Serve with a sprig of mint tastefully arranged in each glass.

Not sure how tastefully arranged that mint sprig is, but what can you do?

We skipped this one at NOPA, as we hadn’t planned ahead with the mint soaking.

Not exactly sure why I picked this wine, but it does really work in this cocktail. And plus, afterwards, you’re left with most of a delicious (and reasonable) bottle of Loire white. I don’t know about you, but I certainly won’t complain about that.

Initially my tastes sort of rebelled at this cocktail. Tastes like wine… Something…Not…Right… But after a while I settled in to the light minty taste. After I finished the cocktail, I poured some plain wine in my glass, figuring it would be more enjoyable. Nice, sure. And if I had a dozen oysters around, maybe sublime. But I missed the flavor of the cocktail.

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.

Harry’s Cocktail

Harry’s Cocktail

1/3 Gancia Italian Vermouth. (3/4 oz Vya Sweet Vermouth)
1 Dash Absinthe. (1/3 tsp. Lucid Absinthe)
2/3 Gin. (1 1/2 oz Beefeater’s Gin)
2 Sprigs of Fresh Mint.

Shake (stir, please) well and strain into cocktail glass. Serve with a stuffed olive.

Sorry, didn’t think to add the olive until after I took the picture.

For some reason, which doesn’t quite make sense to me, this didn’t do much for me. This completely puzzles me, as Sweet Vermouth, Absinthe, Gin, and Mint should pretty much be a gimme. I’m not sure if it is the Vya, the Lucid, the Beefeater’s, or a combination of the above that didn’t work.

I mean it certainly seemed to have enough potential.

I should probably just go back and re-make it with Tanqueray and Martini & Rossi Sweet Vermouth…

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.

Greenbriar Cocktail

Greenbriar Cocktail.

1 Dash Peach Bitters. (Fee’s Peach Bitters)
1/3 French vermouth. (3/4 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth)
2/3 Sherry. (Bodega Dios Baco Fino Sherry)
1 Sprig Fresh Mint.

Shake (stir, please) well and strain into cocktail glass. (Garnish with Mint tip.)

Pretty weird, and the peach bitters and mint make it seem awfully girly, but not unpleasant. Somehow, I could imagine the Greenbriar going well with Middle Eastern food. Especially Feta Cheese and maybe Baba Ghanoush. Not sure exactly why.

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.

Dinah Cocktail

Dinah Cocktail

First put 2 or 3 sprigs of fresh mint (1 sprig) in the shaker and bruise them lightly against the sides of the shaker by stirring with a silver spoon. Pour into the shaker 3 glasses of Whisky (2 oz W.L. Weller 12 Year) and let it stand for some minutes. Add 3 glasses of sweetened Lemon Juice (Juice 1/2 Lemon, 1 teaspoon Caster Sugar) and some (cracked) ice. Shake very carefully and for longer than usual. Serve with a mint leaf standing in each glass.

Is “sweetened Lemon Juice” sour mix? Or lemonade?

I decided to make this basically as a whisk(e)y sour with mint.

Really, how can you go wrong?

Absolutely delicious!

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.

Derby Cocktail

Derby Cocktail

2 Dashes Peach Bitters. (Fee’s Peach bitters)
2 Sprigs Fresh Mint.
1 Glass Dry Gin. (2 oz Bombay Gin)

Shake(*) well and strain into cocktail glass.

Can you imagine what a bartender would say about you if you ordered this? “Oh, I’ll have 2 oz of gin shaken with a couple sprigs of mint and a dash or two of peach bitters.” Hell-lo, Alcoholic!

Of course, really, it is no different than the modern “super-extra-dry vodka martini,” alcohol-wise, and quite a bit tastier. According to Harry McElhone’s book, “Barflies and Cocktails” this “Recipe (is) by E.G. De Gastreaux, of Canal and Vine Streets, Cincinnati, 1903.”

Minty, peachy, cold gin. (Yeah, it does need to be really cold.)

Quite refreshing and vaguely medicinal seeming.

Might even be good for you, if you have a cold!

*I would suggest that instead of shaking the Derby, that you roll it with cracked ice. That is to say just pour it back and forth for 15 seconds or so between two shaker tins or glasses. Not quite shaking, but not quite stirring. If you shake it you’re going to pulverize the mint and all you’ll taste is bitter plant guts.

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.

Clover Leaf Cocktail

Clover Leaf Cocktail

Clover Leaf

The same as CLOVER CLUB, with a sprig of fresh mint on top.

so…

The Juice of 1/2 Lemon or of 1 Lime (Juice 1/2 Lemon)
1/3 Grenadine (3/4 oz Homemade Grenadine)
The White of 1 Egg (whisk this a bit before adding)
2/3 Dry Gin (1 1/2 oz Boodles Gin)

Shake well (Combine above ingredients in boston shaker and shake for a minute or so without ice. Crack the seal on your boston shaker and add ice. Shake well again.) and strain into cocktail glass.

Interesting, how much difference switching two ingredients makes!

For the Clover Club version, the first smell is that of the Tanqueray Gin, then you get the lime. It really is a tart, lean, gin forward cocktail.

With the Boodles and lemon in the Clover Leaf, you get the lemon, the grenadine, and maybe the mint. I guess there is gin in there; but, I’ll be darned if I can taste it.

I guess I would be inclined to call the first Tanqueray and lime drink the manly “Clover Club” and the Boodles and lemon the “Pink Lady”!

Oh, one note, Robert Vermeire, in his book “Cocktails: How to Mix Them” suggests The Clover Club should be “shaken up with one or two sprigs of mint and decorated with a mint leaf on top.” I’ve tried it that way and found it pretty tasty. Though, ultimately, I think maybe lightly muddling the mint sprigs in the gin, then removing them before shaking might be 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.

Genevieve Julep(?)

Oddly, Genevieve makes a pretty tasty Julep type thing. I mean, you do have to like the flavor of the gin to start with. Also mint goes well with the odd Italian herbal liqueur Strega. As always, I am thinking, why not put these tastes together?

1/2 oz Strega
Sprigs Mint
2 oz Genevieve

In the bottom of a bar glass or julep cup, bruise several sprigs of mint in the strega. Remove sprigs. Add fine ice and Genevieve, churn with spoon to mix, and garnish with fresh mint sprigs. Serve with a straw.

I’d say, add an Absinthe float, but that’s probably gilding the lily or paving the highway to hell.