Tag Archives: whisky

rye ginger sling

The spiciness of the Rye Whiskey compliments the ginger so nicely.

The spiciness of the Rye Whiskey compliments the ginger so nicely.

My mentor Andrew Willett recently posted his  Rye Ginger Sling as his “drink of the week” on his blog Elemental Mixology. I decided to try it and ended up falling in love with it – no surprise as it’s roots have been around for more than 100 years! It’s super simple to make and doesn’t require many ingredients. The Rye Ginger Sling is also easily adaptable by making it into a charged sling by serving it over the rocks with the addition of an ounce of soda water. Here’s how you make it:

Rye Ginger Sling
4 coin sized slices of fresh ginger
1-2 teaspoons fine white sugar
2 ounces Rye Whiskey (If using higher then 100 proof I recommend 2 teaspoons of sugar)

Muddle the sugar and ginger together. Add whiskey then ice into a mixing glass. Stir until well chilled and diluted. Strain using a hawthorne strainer and a fine mesh strainer into a chilled cocktail goblet. Garnish with a strip of ginger. Enjoy!

irish cream posset

Not your usual Irish Cream!

Not your usual Irish Cream!

As a bartender (and I think most bartenders would agree), I’ve never been a huge fan of Bailey’s Irish Cream. Sure, it’s ok in coffee or a milkshake but it’s never something special that I would even think of stocking in my home bar. In fact, the process used to manufacture Bailey’s is just as contrived as the fictional signature on the bottle: R.A. Bailey. The product wasn’t released until 1974 and served to solve the “problem” requiring a bartender to actually mix fresh, good, quality ingredients together in a mixing tin. In other words, Bailey’s is merely a time saver.

It wasn’t until I began learning about possets and we made the original recipe for an Irish Cream Posset, that I understood what was sacrificed by creating processed versions of this classic for reasons of convenience and marketability. If you want to really impress your guests with an after dinner drink or simply experience something great that most bars don’t provide, try mixing your own Irish Cream Posset! It’s not hard or even time consuming and the reward far exceeds on-the-shelf products. I’m guessing it will change your opinion about this classic as it did my own. Let me know what you think.


In a mixing tin (shaker) goes:
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ounce organic heavy cream
1 teaspoon fine white sugar
2 ounces Irish malt or pot-stilled whiskey  *I used Powers

Fill the shaker with ice, seal and shake vigorously to mix, chill, dilute and aerate. Strain into a goblet and finely grate fresh nutmeg on top. You won’t believe how good this is! Cheers!

*Powers Irish Whiskey, unlike Jameson or Bushmills, uses 70% pot-stilled whiskey in their gold label, yielding a much more complex and true expression of the malt even though it is still a blend.

cocktail water

cocktailwatersplashwmHaving fun photographing the process of making “cocktail water”. Cocktail water is simply sugar in cube form, 2 dashes of petite bitters and 1/4 pony (1/4 ounce) of water muddled together with the flat back end of a bar spoon. This is the basis for a great old-fashioned whiskey cocktail. This is how all old-fashioned cocktails were made at one time and they involved any spirit a patron would desire. It is not strictly a whiskey cocktail.

*Note – You don’t actually create aggressive splashes when combining these ingredients. I was simply trying to create some drama!

algonquin with amaro mist

Classic Algonquin with Amaro mist.

Classic Algonquin with Amaro mist.

I had a few pineapples sitting around and realized I needed to do something with them before they went bad. Time to get out the juicer! I decided to recreate the classic Rye based cocktail called the Algonquin with fresh pineapple juice. One of the things I like about this cocktail is that it’s extremely balanced and you can taste all of the ingredients distinctly. However, I wanted to give this classic more aromatics and depth. I decided to get my atomizer out and add some Amaro Cio Ciaro. Atomizers add a mist of whatever flavor you fill them with, so they provide a subtle accent to your drinks and take them to the next level. In this case, the Amaro worked perfectly by adding slightly bitter herbaceous notes to the cocktail.

1.5 Ounces Rye Whiskey
3/4 Ounce Dry Vermouth
3/4 Ounce Pineapple Juice
1 Ounce Amaro (in an atomizer)

Combine the first 3 ingredients with ice in a mixing glass. Stir until desired chill and dilution is achieved. Pour into a cocktail glass. Pump atomizer until you feel some resistance and spray mist the top of the cocktail. Enjoy!

pumpkin old fashioned

An old fashioned with a twist for Turkey Day.

An old fashioned with a twist for Turkey Day.

Here’s a tasty Turkey Day treat – I used pumpkin syrup and Wild Turkey 101 Bourbon to create my version of the perfect holiday cocktail. The addition of maple flavored bitters really adds to the drink but any bitters will suffice. Hope you enjoy this as much as I did!

2 ounces Wild Turkey 101 Bourbon
1/2 ounce Torani Pumpkin Pie Syrup
2 dashes maple bitters (I used Urban Moonshine)
Ice (use good bottled water for this!)
twist of orange
1 Lounge Attire Cocktail Cranberry (or Marashchino Cherry)

In a mixing glass combine ice, Bourbon, pumpkin syrup and bitters. Stir until desire dilution is achieved. Strain into an old fashioned or bucket style glass filled with ice. One of the easiest ways to greatly improve the overall quality of your cocktails is to use quality bottled water to make your ice. Finally, rub the orange around the ridge of the rim and twist over the cocktail making sure to release all of the oils contained in the peel. Submerge orange and cocktail cranberry in your super festive pumpkin old fashioned. Enjoy!