The Little Easy Cocktail

  • 1.5 oz Blended Scotch Whisky (Famous or Black Grouse)
  • .5 oz Averna
  • 1 Sugar Cube
  • 2 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
  • 2 dashes Orange Bitters
  • Absinthe rinse

Garnish:  Orange Twist

Glass:  Double Old-Fashioned/Rocks Glass

Tools:  Mixing Glass, Muddler, Julep Strainer, Atomizer (Absinthe loaded)

Preparation:  Place sugar cube into a mixing glass and add both bitters.  Muddle the sugar and bitters until emulsified.  Add the Scotch and Averna and stir with ice for 15 seconds.  Rinse a chilled rocks glass with absinthe.  Strain contents of mixing glass into a chilled rocks glass.  Express the oils from an orange twist and garnish.

This is a recipe from the Food Republic website and is a variation on the traditional Sazerac, substituting Scotch Whisky and Averna for the Rye Whiskey.

* I prefer the Paul McGee approach to the Sazerac by using Demerara syrup in place of the muddled sugar cube.

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Winter Trilby

  • 1 oz Single Malt Scotch (Laphroaig 10 year)
  • 1 oz Luxardo Amaro Abano
  • .5 oz Winter Spice Syrup*
  • .5 oz fresh Lemon Juice
  • 3 oz Boiling Water, plus extra to heat the glass

Garnish:  Grated Nutmeg and Lemon Peel

Glass:  Irish Coffee or Toddy

Tools:  Metal Mixing Tin, Bar Spoon

Preparation:  Preheat an Irish coffee glass with boiling water (make sure the glass is heat tempered).  Combine all other ingredients except the hot water in a metal mixing tin and place the metal tin into a hot water bath and stir for 30 seconds.  Pour out the water from the preheated Irish coffee glass and pour the ingredients from the mixing tin.  Top with boiling water and garnish with freshly grated nutmeg and a lemon peel.

This is a recipe from Imbibe Magazine and is attributed to Mike Ryan of Sable Kitchen + Bar in Chicago.

Winter Spice Syrup:  In a saucepan, combine 2 cups demerara sugar, 1 cup water, 3 green cardamom pods, 1 whole star anise and 1 cinnamon stick, broken into pieces.  Bring to a simmer over medium heat and stir until the sugar is fully dissolved.  Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring for 5 minutes.  Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.  Double strain into a clean glass jar.  Will keep refrigerated for 2 weeks.

Penicillin Cocktail

Spirit:  2 oz Blended Scotch Whisky

Sweetener:  .75 oz ginger-honey syrup (see recipe below)

Acid/Bitter:  .75 oz Lemon Juice

Garnish:  .25 oz Islay Single Malt Scotch; Candied Ginger or Lemon Peel

Preparation:  Place all ingredients, except for the Single Malt Scotch and garnish, into a mixing glass.  Pour into a cocktail shaker with ice and shake.  Strain into a double old-fashioned glass with a large ice cube.  Float the Single Malt Scotch on the top of the drink and garnish with a candied ginger or lemon peel.

This recipe is attributed to Sam Ross of Milk & Honey in New York City.

Ginger-Honey Syrup:  Combine 1/2 cup honey and 1/2 cup water in a saucepan over medium heat and whisk until well combined.  Add an ounce of peeled, sliced fresh ginger and bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 10 minuted.  Allow to cool completely and strain into a bottle.  I found this recipe for the ginger-honey syrup on the website cocktailchronicles.com.

An alternative to creating a ginger infused honey syrup is to use a honey simple syrup and then muddle 3 slices of fresh ginger into the bottom of the cocktail shaker prior to adding the ingredients.  This technique is recommended by Paul Clarke of seriouseats.com for home mixologists because the ginger flavor can lose its luster before a bottle of the infused honey syrup is gone.

Blood & Sand

Spirit:  .75 oz Blended Scotch Whisky (Chivas Regal 12 Year Old Blended), .25 oz Single Malt Scotch (Ardberg Ten Years Old)

Sweetener:  1 oz cherry liquer (Heering), 1 oz sweet vermouth (Antica Formula Carpano)

Bitter/Acid:  1 oz fresh orange juice

Preparation:  Shake and strain into a chilled coupe glass

This recipe was listed in the November 2011 Esquire and was attributed to Dushan Zaric, co-owner of Employees Only in New York City.