1 1⁄4 oz Apple brandy (I used Laird's Bonded)
1 1⁄4 oz Sweet vermouth (I used Cocchi Vermouth di Torino)
1 1⁄4 oz Salers Gentiane (Suze or Aveze would work too)
1⁄4 oz Bénédictine
1 twst Lemon peel (As garnish)

Stir with ice, strain into a cocktail coupe or glass, and garnish with a lemon twist.


Uploaded after all these years since Shawn C mentioned this drink here yesterday.


At Russell House Tavern years ago, I wanted to craft a riff on the classic Marconi Wireless. It started with me thinking about how well gentian liqueurs like Salers pair with sweet vermouth such as in the Harry Palmer. It ended up a 3 part drink, and since we do a 4 ounce pour at the bar, I was left with a recipe that was a quarter ounce short. While the original was good, it was improved with the earthy, herbal, and chocolate notes of Benedictine; I tried that knowing how well apple brandy and Benedictine pair in drinks like the Full House #2. In the end, it seemed less like a Negroni structure and more like a Vieux Carré. For a name, I took the communication theme and dubbed it the Tin Can Telephone.

Cocktail summary
Picture of Tin Can Telephone
FRY 2013
Posted by yarm on
Created by
Frederic Yarm, Russell House Tavern, Cambridge, MA
Is the
author's original creation
Not yet rated
4 stars
(5 ratings)
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  • Excellent with Suze (and served in a rocks glass sans rock, as my coupes can't hold that much).
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This is a fun one to try because the end result is somewhat unexpected, at least to me, and the drink is a pleasant sip. The Laird's apple flavor is hidden or transformed, but a moderate chocolate note emerges, even when using Cinzano sweet vermouth (vs. Cocchi Vermouth di Torino which often produces a chocolate flavor). I can't say I have noticed chocolate in Benedictine before, but some describe a caramel or fudge flavor in tasting notes for Benedictine, so there is some similarity/basis for it. I used Salers which is dry and provides the purest/simplest gentian expression in the cocktail. Since the orange bitters were not specified, I used the Death & Co. equal parts Fee's/Regan's/Angostura mix to cover all the bases.

yarm commented on 12/06/2023:

I believe we were using Regan's Orange Bitters back then at that bar, but I didn't record that in my blog so I didn't put it there. Also, most craft bars in Boston in 2013 were using Regan's especially with the ease in ordering them from the same distributor that sold us Peychaud's and whiskey.

Also, I uploaded the recipe because Shawn loves it so much (I think I invented it and served it to 2 or 3 guests at most).

Very good! Made with: Calvados, Carpano Antica, Suze, Benedictine, Reagan's Orange Bitters, Lemon twist.
Stirred and strained over BFC.
Brings out the chocolate elements in Benedictine that we hadn't noticed before.