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bourbon – rye

My favorite category, cocktails that rely on American bourbon and rye for backbone.

Short and evil: the Devil’s Soul cocktail

Gaz Regan first published Ted Kilgore’s Devil’s Soul cocktail in 101 Best New Cocktails 2012. As Regan says, it combines “ingredients that absolutely positively do not belong in the same glass,” yet somehow they work together to form a complex and sophisticated success.

Continue reading “Short and evil: the Devil’s Soul cocktail”

Scions of the Boulevardier: the 1795 Cocktail

The 1795 Cocktail is one of the Negroni’s modern descendants, from the whiskey-based Boulevardier side of the family.

More specifically, it’s a direct riff on the Boulevardier’s rye whiskey variant, Dominic Venegas’s 1794 Cocktail.

Continue reading “Scions of the Boulevardier: the 1795 Cocktail”

Ritual drinking: the Ephemeral Mint Julep

The most notable (and infamous) ritual food in my family was the Christmas goose. Oh, how my mother reviled even the smell of that great, fatty, oven-greasing bird; she taught the rest of us to hate it, too, just as she and her sister had for decades. On the other hand, there was my grandmother, matriarch of the family, and for her, roast goose was the one immutable element of Christmas dinner. No goose, no Christmas. So we roasted goose.

Continue reading “Ritual drinking: the Ephemeral Mint Julep”

The Libertine

Last time, contemplating Trader Vic’s Fog Cutter, I pondered the risks of combining multiple spirits—“too many spirits”—in cocktails, and the fine line between great cocktails and trainwrecks.

So it was an interesting moment for my first encounter with the Libertine.

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The Gold Rush Cocktail

The Gold Rush is a modern cocktail with a definite old-school classic vibe. With a more complex flavor than the whiskey sour on which its modeled, it is a simple combination of bourbon, lemon and honey. Continue reading “The Gold Rush Cocktail”

Mendacity and the Oriental Cocktail

I’m pretty sure that there are no true stories about cocktail origins.

You know the stories I mean—the wonderful, detail-laden, cock-and-bull accounts that ornament so many of our classics. Every once in awhile, there’s a great one. Continue reading “Mendacity and the Oriental Cocktail”

Devil Mix and smoked absinthe: the Future Ghost Cocktail

I hope you still have some of the “Devil Mix” from Johnny Michaels’s Handsome Devil, because we need some for the Future Ghost.

Michaels describes the Future Ghost as “a Sazerac-Manhattan hybrid, served in a bordeaux wineglass.” Continue reading “Devil Mix and smoked absinthe: the Future Ghost Cocktail”

The Black Manhattan Cocktail

I’m always happy to return to my favorite food group: the Manhattan. This time, it’s the Black Manhattan. Continue reading “The Black Manhattan Cocktail”

The Brown Derby Cocktail

Why would a posh LA restaurant name a popular cocktail after a competitor?

At some point in the mid-1930s, the exclusive Vendome Club did just that. The Vendome—sort of a west-coast 21—started serving a version of the whiskey sour named after one of its Hollywood neighbors: the Brown Derby.
Continue reading “The Brown Derby Cocktail”

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