Tuesday, June 23, 2015

A Few Random Old-Fashioneds

I find it hard to resist an old-fashioned. Here I'm talking about the simplest classic cocktail. Booze, syrup, bitters; full stop. For a "fancy" version, add a dash or two of something flavorful.

Simplicity is a virtue here. Made well, a classic bourbon- or rye-based old-fashioned is a perfect and uncluttered masterpiece. You've got a delicate sweetness, an accenting punch of spice, a rich mouthfeel, all taming the base spirit but never letting you forget it's there.

Flexibility is another core aspect of the old-fashioned. A traditional version is made with whiskey, but it doesn't have to be. Any spirit that you wouldn't mind drinking straight will do. Likewise syrup; there's no need to stick to plain old simple when you've got variously flavored varieties. And there are a million different craft bitters out there today. Grab some of each, and combine them over a large ice cube. Boom: old-fashioned.

Here are a couple good combinations I've stumbled into recently.

2 1/4 oz Nikka Taketsuru Pure Malt whiskey
1/4 oz lemon syrup
4 dashes Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas' Own Decanter bitters

2 1/4 oz Mezcal Sacrificio Reposado
1/4 oz honey-ginger syrup
2 dashes Bitter Truth Xocolatl Mole bitters
2 dashes Regan's No. 6 Orange bitters

2 1/4 oz Norseman Strawberry Rhubarb Gin
1/4 oz cinnamon spice syrup
2 dashes Bitter Truth Tonic bitters
2 dashes Angostura bitters

For all of the above, stir briefly and strain over a large ice cube. Don't even think about garnishing.

What? No mention of hiatus? Shhhh what hiatus, what silliness is this?

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