Recent comments

  • Reply to: Vegetal Vector   by   4 months 2 weeks ago

    Quick question - is it Laird's applejack and Fernet Branca? Thanks,  Zachary

  • Reply to: Boulevardon   by   4 months 3 weeks ago

    What to do when you don't have the suggested bourbon? That was my predicament with the Boulevardon, so I used an ol' standby, Elijah Craig. The outcome was a drink that was too sweet for my tastebuds, which surprised me because I tend to like drinks on the sweet side. But this drink was too sweet, and the bourbon was w-a-y in the background. I rated the drink at 3.0.

    So, I made two changes, one of which was significant. Using the same proportions, I used Averna, Dolin blanc vermouth (the major change), and Jim Beam Black (98 proof). The result? Great. Not too sweet and the bourbon was right where it belonged (front and center), without overpowering the other ingredients. I rated this libation at 4.0!

    The lesson learned? In this case, switch from a sweet vermouth to a blanc or blanco vermouth and use a high proof bourbon. Doing so should give you a satisfying libation.

  • Reply to: Saints and Sinners   by   4 months 3 weeks ago

    I'm skeptical about this drink. It's surprisingly sweet for something with only a teaspoon of syrup. The bitters do help though. I do see now why so few drinks have grapefruit juice stand alone; it does seem to cry for a hint of lime.

  • Reply to: Bushwick   by   4 months 3 weeks ago

    I like this better than the Brooklyn.

  • Reply to: Morricone   by   4 months 3 weeks ago

    Curated this slightly - added source citation, changed Peychaud's bitters to orange bitters.  Thanks,  Zachary

  • Reply to: Morricone   by   4 months 3 weeks ago

    This is a brilliant drink, one of my all-time favorites when it's made well.

    FWIW, I'm not sure about the Peychauds bitters. The Northstar Cocktails book has it listed as orange bitters, and that's how it's always been made whenever I've had it at Marvel.

  • Reply to: Marais   by   4 months 3 weeks ago


    A good substitute for Amer Picon is Bigallet's China-China, which I believe is exported to the U.S.



  • Reply to: Oriental   by   4 months 3 weeks ago

    I had to try this drink; after all, there were 11 people who rated the "Oriental" at 4.0, and only one comment. I put the libation together using Rittenhouse rye, Dolin sweet vermouth, Cointreau, and lime juice. For my taste, the "Oriental" was a tad limey, so I added a Rittenhouse rye float of approximately 1 tsp, and things were much more to my liking. All in all, I would use less lime juice, or use more rye (perhaps 1 3/4 oz), or use the recipe but add a rye float. My vote is for the last option, but only because I tried it, and it worked out well.

    Over all, I rated this drink at 3.5. I wouldn't go so far as to say that the "Oriental" is a good alternative for Margarita drinkers. I would say, however, that Margarita drinkers may find this to be a welcoming libation. Regardless, enjoy your drinks, but drive responsibly.

  • Reply to: Ginger spice   by   4 months 3 weeks ago

    I'd definitely reduce the cardamom bitters. It can barely smell anything other than that, including the elderflower. I actually love cardamom, but even I find it difficult in this drink.

  • Reply to: The San Martin   by   4 months 3 weeks ago

    "The San Martin" has an unusual taste--not unpleasant--just unusual, and its taste kind of caught me offguard. I love virtually all hard liquors, but my mainstay is gin, and I've had many drinks with a gin and sweet vermouth combination. But this one... I made the drink using Bombay Saphire gin, Vya sweet vermouth, and (of course) 1 tsp of yellow Chartruse. I think it's the yellow Chartruse that's got me bamboozled.

    Perhaps a different sweet vermouth will do better (e.g., the ol' standbys, Dolin or Antica Formula). The Chartruse is nicely placed in this drink; barely perceptible, but there. Maybe 1/4 or 1/2 more gin may make for a more satisfying taste and drink. Puzzle this one out for me, please. I did rate the drink at 3.5, however.

  • Reply to: Spaghetti Western #2   by   4 months 4 weeks ago

    "Spaghetti Western #2" is a tasty, easy to enjoy libation. I used Bulleit 10 burbon, which is a tad lighter than Bulleit's standard (but excellent) burbon. For that reason, the burbon was a little more in the background than I like. I suspect that, if you don't have Bulleit burbon on your shelf, that you will find Jim Beam or Elijah Craig burbon to be good substitutes. Beyond that, you'll taste a smokey flavor from the mezcal (I used Vida mezcal) and a little punch from the Strega. All in all, the overtones of each ingredient mix well, into a satisfying drink.Don't forget the flamed orange zest, but be careful you don't burn your thumb. The burnt flesh doesn't mix well with the other ingredients! Otherwise, mix, stir, flame, and enjoy!.

  • Reply to: Shattered Glasser   by   5 months 1 hour ago

    It looks like an insane mish-mash but it really works. The way all the flavors are there to be almost-cerebrally picked apart like aurally picking out particular parts of an orchestra reminds me a bit of another improbable cocktail I found here, El Nacional.

  • Reply to: Churchill   by   5 months 6 hours ago

    I'll adjust the number of drinks. I saw that Imbibe link and read it was a Manhattan variant, shuddered, and found another version. It's no more a Manhattan variant than a Daiquiri is a Old Fashioned variant. Thanks,  Zachary

  • Reply to: Churchill   by   5 months 7 hours ago

    Tasty; fairly "tiki", which was surprising.  A "part" is not an "ounce"; the recipe makes 2.

    See the same ratio with....?more temperance?, e.g.

    Also: many recipes I saw agreed on the Johnnie, but called for Cointreau or other triple sec rather than the Gran Marnier.

  • Reply to: The Raging Bull   by   5 months 2 days ago

    <br />
    This "Raging Bull" does not rage; it goes down oh so smoothly. By itself, Aquavit does not have a pleasant taste, but I knew from experience, tastes can be decieving. I used three top shelf ingredients (plus a surprise ingredient) to make this drink. Cabo Wabo anejo tequila, Linie Aquavit, and Averna, plus the orange zest made up the libation. It was great, with no one ingredient overwhelming the others. It went down very easily and smoothly.

    But, on a hunch I added one other ingredient (my surprise ingredient). I added a dash of Bittermens Xocolatl Mole, which added subtle smoothness and depth. There was no chocolate overtone, but an additional dash would probably give it. With or without the bitters, I found this to be a great drink, and one I rated 4.5. Drink up, but drive responsibly. </p>

  • Reply to: Pioneer Spirit   by   5 months 2 days ago

    Curated applejack to Laird's 7.5 yo apple brandy as per source reference.

  • Reply to: Pioneer Spirit   by   5 months 3 days ago

    Quite thin and 'hot'. One bsp of simple syrup helps a lot.

  • Reply to: Joy Division   by   5 months 3 days ago

    Accidentally made it without adding the vermouth. Made it again with the vermouth, and actually prefer it without. Bright, tight, herbaceous. Split the gin between Beefeater and Botanist.

  • Reply to: Roycroft Cocktail   by   5 months 4 days ago

    Good, but the Chartreuse is a little overwhelming.

    Upping the rye to 45ml and cutting the Chartreuse in half was a nice improvement.

  • Reply to: Yankee Skipper   by   5 months 4 days ago

    Lately, I've seen a number of libations posted by Craig E, many which intrigued me. Yankee Skipper was one; so using top shelf ingredients, I put it together. I used Bulleit rye, Vya sweet vermouth, Smith & Cross rum, and Picon Amer. What I expected and what I tasted were two different animals.

    What I expected was a somewhat smooth tasting cocktail with a predominant rum taste; what I tasted was a clash of rye and rum, with no taste of the Picon Amer. Specifying the rye and sweet vermouth may help; different brands of rye and sweet vermouth have their own characteristic tastes, and may or may not blend well with Smith and Cross rum.

    That leads to my next suggestion: use a smoother rum, such as a Barbados or Haiti rum. I did use an orange twist, which helped reduce the sharp, unpleasant taste of the original recipe. Perhaps I missed the boat on this one; only others can say yea or nay. As is, I rate it as 2.5, and look at the Yankee Skipper as a work in progress.

  • Reply to: Purgatory   by   5 months 5 days ago

    Like the 1st commentor, I, too, prefer a 3 oz cocktail rather than a 4 oz one. However, I made "Purgatory" using the given recipe because my mind said "yes, this will be a great drink." And it is, although the combination of Benedictine and Green Chartruse overshadow the Rittenhouse Rye--which should be no surprise. If I were to reduce the size of this drink, I would start by reducing each ingredient by 1/4 oz, and adjusting according to taste. But do keep the lemon twist! The challenge when reducing the size of this drink is to keep a balance of the ingredients' taste, but also, if possible, to bring out the rye, so that it is more prominent.

  • Reply to: White Lion   by   5 months 6 days ago

    I curated this - a little googling pegged it as an Embury drink so I removed the bitters and changed lemon (from the OP submission) to lime and jiggled the ratio a bit to conform to the book. Thanks,  Zachary

  • Reply to: Royal Bermuda Yacht Club   by   5 months 6 days ago

    Alternate Recipe via PUNCH:

    • 1 1/2 ounces rum (preferably El Dorado 5 Year)
    • 1/2 ounce falernum
    • 1/4 ounce orange curacao (preferably Pierre Ferrand)
    • 3/4 ounce lime juice
  • Reply to: Domaine de Canton   by   5 months 1 week ago

    Here's another one: The Witch's Word. Saw it on It combines Domaine de Canton with Strega.... delicious !!!

  • Reply to: Carolina Sundress   by   5 months 1 week ago

    Subbed Atsby Armadillo Cake vermouth for the Vya. Outstanding!