Moonlight Cocktail

Moonlight Cocktail

Moonlight Cocktail
(6 People)

1 1/2 Glasses Grape-fruit Juice. (3/4 oz fresh Grapefruit Juice)
2 Glasses Gin. (1 oz Broker’s Gin)
1/2 Glass Kirsch. (1/4 oz Clear Creek Kirsch)
2 Glasses White Wine. (1 oz Les Domains Tatins, 2007, Quincy/Domaine du Tremblay)

Add ice and shake thoroughly. Serve by placing in each glass a thin shaving of lemon peel.

A very dry cocktail.

I mentioned the ingredients to this cocktail to some drinky friends and they said, “That’s a Boudreauing Wine-tini!” Ahem. Well, as we all know by now, there truly is very little new under the sun, whether it is the use of fresh herbs and spices in cocktails or wine.

It is actually a pleasant cocktail, more along the lines of a punch, almost, than what I usually think of as the typical cocktail flavor palette. And, yes, it is a very dry cocktail!

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.

Montpelier Cocktail

Montpelier Cocktail

Montpelier Cocktail

1/3 French Vermouth. (3/4 oz Noilly Prat Dry Vermouth)
2/3 Dry Gin. (1 1/2 oz Jackalope Gin)

Shake (I’d stir) well and strain into cocktail glass. Add a pickled pearl onion (or three).

I guess this is where the missing onion in the Gibson went!

Every Thursday at the Mixoloseum chat room we host an event called “Thursday Drink Night”. A theme is picked and folks show up. Suggest a drink. Try other peoples’ suggested drinks. Insult each others’ Moms. That sort of thing. Because it starts on East Coast time, I’m usually at work at the beginning, out to dinner for the middle, and show up for the bitter end.

However, fun to take the odd second out from the end of my work day and chat with other drink obsessed folks.

This week the theme was “Gin” and they suggested you buy a new bottle to try and post the drink you made with it.

We have guests this week at home, so I wasn’t going to be able to do that.

So, instead I tried to take both TDN and the Savoy Stomp out into the real world.

I stopped by Alembic Bar in the upper Haight on my way to dinner and asked the bartender there, Buffalo, to make me a 2-1 Gibson with Jackalope gin.

He obliged, and thus the blurry camera phone photo above.

Jackalope was only OK in the Montpelier. I’d say it is a bit lightly flavored to be used in a cocktail heavy in vermouth. For better or worse, I could barely tell there was gin in the drink.

Speaking of Alembic, they’ve started a blog: Alembic Bar. Check it out.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.

Monte Carlo Imperial Cocktail

Monte Carlo Imperial Cocktail

Monte Carlo Imperial Cocktail

1/2 Dry Gin. (1 oz Broker’s Gin)
1/4 Lemon Juice. (1/2 oz Lemon Juice)
1/4 White Crème de Menthe. (1/2 oz Brizard White Creme de Menthe)

Shake well and strain into medium-size glass and fill up with Champagne (Louis Bouillot Cremant de Bourgogne Rose Perle d’Aurore).

Was explaining to the house guests the nature of the Savoy Stomp, and they were asking about what cocktails were coming up. The Creme de Menthe here certainly caught their attention. “Sounds Horrible!” “How many more cocktails do you have to make?” and similar.

Those of us who tried the Monte Carlo Imperial found it far less awful than you might imagine. Helps, I suppose, that the Brizard Creme de Menthe is not an awful liqueur. General response was, “If someone was offering it to me and nothing better, I wouldn’t turn it down.”

It is, nothing but a French 75 with Creme de Menthe as a sweetener instead of sugar.

The mint makes it a bit girly, but certainly nothing near the “pour down the sink” category. In fact, not at all far from the well regarded Old Cuban.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.

BOTW–Virgil’s Root Beer

Virgil's Label

Interestingly, I recently received a large box of, uh, soda from Reed’s. The bottles included their Extra Ginger Brew, Spiced Apple Brew and Virgil’s Root Beer.

I’ve enjoyed and appreciated their Extra Ginger Brew before and used it in Savoy Cocktails. Not as super spicy as the description “Extra Ginger” would lead you to believe, it is however, a very natural tasting ginger beer style soda.

I haven’t yet tried their Spiced Apple Brew, but have one chilling in the fridge as we speak.

The thing that interested me most, however, was the Virgil’s Root Beer.

Root Beer and I go waaaaaay back.

Growing up, a trip to the A&W drive in, (for a Root Beer float and Cheeseburger with bacon, thank you very much,) was as intrinsic a part of just about any sporting event as the event itself. Win the track meet? A&W afterward. Win the baseball game? A&W afterward. Lose the track meet? A&W afterward. Lose the baseball game? A&W afterward. And yes, it was a real drive in, with the call boxes and car hops who would bring your order out and attach the tray to your partially rolled up window.

Looking over the ingredients in the Root Beer, they include “Unbleached Cane Sugar, Anise from Spain, Licorice from France, Vanilla from Madagascar, Cinnamon from Ceylon, Wintergreen from China, Sweet Birch from the US, Molasses from the US, Nutmeg from Indonesia, Pimento Oil from Jamaica, Balsam Oil from Peru, and Cassia Oil from China.” Whew, that’s a lot of stuff!

Wait a sec, this isn’t a Root Beer at all, as it has no Sassafras, Virgil’s is a Birch Beer!

Tasting Virgil’s, to me, with all the spices above, the dominant taste element is the Wintergreen.

It’s a pleasant, natural tasting Root Beer-like beverage. Not overly sweet. However, the heavy wintergreen flavor detracts somewhat from the overall flavor. The use of unbleached cane sugar, on the other hand, gives them big points in my book. Given a choice between the usual HFCS heavy American Root Beers and Virgil’s, I’d pick Virgil’s to salve that occasional Birch Beer craving.

Virgil's Root Beer

Monkey Gland Cocktail

Monkey Gland

Monkey Gland Cocktail

3 Dashes Absinthe. (1 teaspoon Verte de Fougerolles Absinthe)
3 Dashes Grenadine. (2 teaspoons Homemade Grenadine)
1/3 Orange Juice. (1 1/2 oz Orange Juice)
2/3 Dry Gin. (3 oz Plymouth Gin)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

According to Robert Vermeire, “This cocktail is very popular in Deauville and London. Harry McElhone, the well-known bartender of Ciro’s Club, invented it.”

Here is Mr. McElhone’s version from “Barflies and Cocktails”: 1 dash of Absinthe; 1 teaspoonful of Grenadine; ½ Orange Juice; ½ Gordon Gin.

He also notes, “Invented by the Author, and deriving its name from Voronoff’s experiments in rejuvenation.”

Voronoff’s experiments in rejuvenation” allegedly refers to therapeutically implanting monkey, uh, parts in humans.

Some details from the wikpedia article:

In his book Rejuvenation by Grafting (1925), Voronoff describes what he believes are some of the potential effects of his surgery. While “not an aphrodisiac”, he admits the sex drive may be improved. Other possible effects include better memory, the ability to work longer hours, the potential for no longer needing glasses (due to improvement of muscles around the eye), and the prolonging of life. Voronoff also speculates that the grafting surgery might be beneficial to sufferers of “dementia praecox”, the mental illness known today as schizophrenia.

In the 1930s, thousands of people took this treatment, but by the 1940s it had fallen out of favor as scientific studies failed to show any benefit, beyond the placebo effect, to Voronoff’s treatments.

Anyway, made a double batch of Monkey Glands thinking Mrs. Flannestad or the house guests would enjoy them. However, aside from me, no one seemed particularly taken with the cocktail.

More trivia:

Voronoff’s experiments were in vogue during the 1920s and 1930s. According to wikipedia, his first transplant of a Monkey Gland into a human took place in 1920.

McElhone was at Ciro’s in London prior to taking over Harry’s American Bar in Paris in 1923. So, probably, this cocktail was invented, or at least named, some time between 1920 and 1923.

Given that timing, odds are this cocktail was probably made with the newly available* Wormwood free Pernod.

*From this Coctkailtimes article: Absinthe was banned in 1910 in the Switzerland, 1912 in the US, and 1914 in France. In 1920, France again allowed the production of anise flavored drinks. Pernod’s new Wormwood free formulation was one of the first out of the gate.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.

Moll Cocktail

Moll Cocktail

Moll Cocktail

(6 People)
2 Glasses Gin. (3/4 oz Plymouth Gin)
2 Glasses Sloe Gin. (3/4 oz Lindesfarne Sloe Gin)
2 Glasses French Vermouth. (3/4 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth)
Add a few drops of Orange Bitters (1 drop Angostura Orange Bitters) and sugar (dash Depaz Cane Syrup) to taste.

Shake (stir?) and serve in cocktail glasses.

Vermouth, strangely, seemed to be the dominant element in the Moll cocktail.

A perfectly fine, if a bit dull, cocktail.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.

Modder River Cocktail

Modder River Cocktail

Modder River Cocktail

1/4 French Vermouth. (1/2 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth)
1/4 Caperitif. (1/2 oz St. Raphael Gold)
1/2 Dry Gin. (1 oz North Shore Distiller’s No. 11)
(dash Angostura Orange Bitters)

Stir well and strain into cocktail glass. (Squeeze orange peel over glass and discard.)

An enjoyable, if a bit odd combination.

Still no real idea what sort of “Aperitif” Caperitif was, so continuing to experiment with various aperitif wines.

St. Raphael Gold is growing on me. It does really remind me of Sherry, so it is a good contrast here to the Dry Vermouth.

The Modder River is a river in South Africa that forms part of the border between the Northern Cape and the Free State provinces.

It was, apparently, also the site of one of the rather famous battles during the Boer war.

Battle of Modder River

British tactics, little changed from the Crimea, used at Modder River, Magersfontein, Colenso and Spion Kop were incapable of winning battles against entrenched troops armed with modern magazine rifles. Every British commander made the same mistake; Buller; Methuen, Roberts and Kitchener. When General Kelly-Kenny attempted to winkle Cronje’s commandoes out of their riverside entrenchments at Paardeburg using his artillery, Kitchener intervened and insisted on a battle of infantry assaults; with the same disastrous consequences as Colenso, Modder River, Magersfontein and Spion Kop.

Not a great day for the British…

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.

Mint Cocktail

Mint Cocktail

Mint Cocktail
(6 People)
Soak a few sprigs of fresh mint for two hours in a glass and a half of White Wine (3/4 oz Les Domains Tatins, 2007, Quincy/Domaine du Tremblay). Add half a glass of Crème de Menthe (1/4 oz Brizard Creme de Menthe), 2 Glasses of Gin (1 oz Broker’s Gin) and 1 1/2 glasses of White Wine (3/4 oz Les Domains Tatins, 2007, Quincy/Domaine du Tremblay). Ice and shake (or stir if you prefer) thoroughly. Serve with a sprig of mint tastefully arranged in each glass.

Not sure how tastefully arranged that mint sprig is, but what can you do?

We skipped this one at NOPA, as we hadn’t planned ahead with the mint soaking.

Not exactly sure why I picked this wine, but it does really work in this cocktail. And plus, afterwards, you’re left with most of a delicious (and reasonable) bottle of Loire white. I don’t know about you, but I certainly won’t complain about that.

Initially my tastes sort of rebelled at this cocktail. Tastes like wine… Something…Not…Right… But after a while I settled in to the light minty taste. After I finished the cocktail, I poured some plain wine in my glass, figuring it would be more enjoyable. Nice, sure. And if I had a dozen oysters around, maybe sublime. But I missed the flavor of the cocktail.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.

Neyah White

This is the Eighth in an ongoing series of bartender features on the Underhill-Lounge.

Previously, I had experimented by asking the bartender at Montgomery Place to make me a Bombay Cocktail No. 2, but this just seemed to result in a grumpy bartender.

To make it less of a shock, I thought I would contact some local bartenders and give them a choice of the dozen or so Savoy Cocktails that might be coming up in the book.

Surprisingly, some actually were game.

When folks ask me which bars to go to in San Francisco, there are several restaurants which I routinely list along with bars. Among them is NOPA in the Western Addition neighborhood near the Panhandle of Golden Gate Park.

Nopa Front Door

When my wife and I lived in another part of San Francisco, one of our favorite restaurants was Chow. We were regulars there from the time it opened until we moved out of the neighborhood. Great, affordable food presented with heart. One of the astounding things to me was how long the staff stick around at Chow. We can still go back in, nearly 6 years later, and still recognize some of the same staff who waited on us.

Nopa Sign

A couple years ago, one of the guys who opened Chow split off to open NOPA. Slightly more expensive food, a bigger space, and a full bar. They were also one of the first restaurants in San Francisco to include a large table off the bar for communal dining.

Sky Bottles

One of the nifty things about Chow is that it is open fairly late. They have carried that even a bit further at NOPA, serving until 1:00 AM. Combine that with a bar, and you know it is going to be popular with the industry crowd.

As far as I can tell, like Chow, NOPA has been an incredibly successful restaurant and bar.

To get back to the bar, I’d run into Neyah White, the bar manager at NOPA, a few times around town. We’d talked. I’d insulted his taste in Absinthe. We talked some more. Eventually we got around to the idea of getting together to make some Savoy Cocktails. Finally, on a Saturday in October our schedules aligned and I met up with him on a Saturday afternoon to get together, chat, and try some Savoy Cocktails.


Neyah White BIO:
Neyah finds himself lucky enough to be a part of the burgeoning cocktail scene in San Francisco. A transplant from the East Coast, he has been serving drinks for 15 years in some of the busiest and most well respected venues on both sides of the Country. In an effort to better understand the tools of his craft, he has spent time visiting distilleries all over the world as well as completing the Whisky Academy at Bruichladdich under the legendary Jim McEwan. This time in Scotland inspired him to use the bounty of ex-wine barrels available to him in Northern California to start enhancing his own Whiskey and Rum. Look for his independently bottled spirits to start showing up in the years to come, they are still sleeping now.
Neyah is currently the bar manager at Nopa in San Francisco where his program is well respected for its array of house produced bitters, tinctures and liqueurs. He is a believer in a passive approach to menu setting where the local farms and orchards determine what is used by season rather than forcing ingredients into drinks. These two aspects combine to produce many one-of-a-kind cocktails that cannot exist anywhere other than the bar at Nopa and that have been featured in the publications like the San Francisco Chronicle, Food and Wine, USAToday, Wine and Spirits, 7×7, Imbibe and Cheers.

When I asked Neyah what cocktails of the dozen I had sent he wanted to make he said, “Let’s make all of them. I’m painting my apartment and am really sore. I could use a break.”

Well, OK then… He even brought along some of his stash of vintage glassware to make the pictures more interesting.


Melon Cocktail

1/8 Lemon Juice. (1/4 oz Lemon Juice)
3/8 Maraschino. (3/4 oz Maraska Maraschino)
1/2 Gin. (1 oz Plymouth Gin)

Shake (stir?) well and strain into cocktail glass.

Like the Allen, another Aviation-esque cocktail. Perfectly fine, but not particularly outstanding.

merry widow

Merry Widow Cocktail

2 Dashes Absinthe. (St. George)
2 Dashes Angostura Bitters.
2 Dashes Benedictine. (1 teaspoon Benedictine)
1/2 French Vermouth. (1 oz French Vermouth)
1/2 Dry Gin. (1 oz Plymouth Gin)

Stir well and strain into cocktail glass. Twist lemon peel on top.

When we initially tasted this, it was just too dry. Neyah remarked,”That Widow is just not very merry!” A bit more benedictine seemed to bring it into somewhat more tasty territory, but to my tastes there was still something conflicting in this combination. Maybe the bitters and the Absinthe?


Mikado Cocktail

2 Dashes Angostura Bitters.
2 Dashes Crème de Noyau. (1/2 teaspoon Luxardo Amaretto)
2 Dashes Orgeat Syrup. (1/2 teaspoon Underhill Homemade Orgeat)
2 Dashes Curacao. (1/2 teaspoon Senior Orange Curacao
1/2 Glass Brandy. (1 oz Lustau Brandy)

Shake (stir!) well and strain into cocktail glass.

A Japanese Cocktail, more or less, and who can argue with that?

Q: It seems the question on everybody’s mind is, have you seen any change in people’s drinking habits due to the recent financial news?

A: We’re still doing good numbers, with busy dinners and the late night industry crowd still coming in (Note: NOPA, like Beretta serves dinner from open until close at 1:00 AM).

It isn’t so much what people are drinking where we’ve noticed a change, as when and who are drinking.

Up until now the bar had been banging from open until close.  We’ve seen a real drop off in happy hour drinkers.  The sort of business crowd who were coming in at 5:30 right after work.  They’re either staying at work longer or just not drinking out as much.


Millionaire Cocktail (No. 1)

The Juice of 1 Lime.
1 Dash Grenadine. (NOPA House Made)
1/3 Sloe Gin. (3/4 oz Plymouth Sloe Gin)
1/3 Apricot Brandy. (3/4 oz Rothman & Winter Orchard Apricot)
1/3 Jamaica Rum. (3/4 oz Ron Barcelo Rum)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

The Millionaire, to my mind, is a neglected classic. Unfortunately, we didn’t have any Jamaica Rum and subbed in the Puerto Rican Ron Barcelo. It’s definitely a lighter flavored rum then the Appleton V/X I usually make this with. This allowed the Apricot Brandy to really come to the fore.

Millionaire No 2

Millionaire Cocktail (No. 2)

1 Dash Anisette. (dash or two Sambuca)
The White of 1 Egg.
1/3 Absinthe. (3/4 oz Obsello Absinthe)
2/3 Dry Gin. (3/4 oz Leopold’s Gin)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

Whatever you do, don’t leave out the sweetener if you are making this with traditional Absinthe. If you do so, it will likely end up fairly dry. With a healthy dash of Sambuca, we found this an interesting eye-opener type cocktail.


Million Dollar Cocktail

Tablespoonful Pineapple Juice. (Knudsen)
Teaspoonful Grenadine. (NOPA House Made)
The White of 1 Egg.
1/3 Italian Vermouth. (3/4 oz Martini & Rossi Rosso Vermouth)
2/3 Plymouth Gin. (1 1/2 oz Plymouth Gin)

Shake well and strain into medium size glass.

Egg white and Italian Vermouth cocktails always look like dishwater to me, so we were pleased to note combining the textures of Egg White and Pineapple presented a very interesting textural element. You almost can’t taste the pineapple, more feeling it. A somewhat tasty and bizarre drink, if not particularly visually appealing.

Q: Spirits and cocktail programs are currently being marketed as what I’d call luxury goods.  To me this is a self limiting strategy.  (Ooops, that wasn’t a question.)

A: A lot of this comes down to the money poured into and the money made by the vodka industry.  It’s not a new thing, I recently wrote a post on a similar theme on the blog (“I declare that I now own the word ‘cool’“).  To me, the Absolut ads from the 1980s are where it started.  It’s just more and more we’re seeing it seep into other spirits and even now bar programs.  I don’t envy young bartenders who are being asked by management to create serious drink programs without experience in the industry.  A lot of these really big corporations will just give you product, if they think it will get them on the back bar.

Minnehaha Cocktail

Minnehaha Cocktail

The Juice of 1/4 Orange. (3/4 oz Fresh Orange Juice)
1/4 French Vermouth. (1/2 oz Noilly Prat Dry Vermouth)
1/4 Italian Vermouth. (1/2 oz Martini & Rossi Rosso Vermouth)
1/2 Dry Gin. (1 oz Martin Miller Gin)
1 dash Absinthe. (St. George)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

Aside from the fact that I just made this exact cocktail less than a week ago as the Maurice, it is fascinating how different this version is! I know I cheated last time and used the M&R Bianco Vermouth, but damn is this different. For me, it is the cucumber in the Martin Miller Gin, which really rises to the fore.


Mickie Walker Cocktail.

1 Dash Grenadine. (House Made)
1 Dash Lemon Juice.
1/4 Italian Vermouth. (1/2 oz Martini and Rossi Rosso)
3/4 Scotch Whisky. (John, Mark, and Robbo Smooth, Sweeter One)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

Blind, we doubted we could tell this from a Rob Roy, but we both thought we would rather be drinking a Rob Roy.

Mississippi Mule

Mississippi Mule Cocktail

2/3 Dry Gin. (1 1/2 oz Broker’s Gin)
1/6 Lemon Juice. (1/2 of 3/4 oz Lemon Juice)
1/6 Crème de Cassis. (1/2 of 3/4 oz Trenel Creme de Cassis)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

No idea why this is named “Mississippi Mule”. Don’t really see a connection to Mississippi nor does it contain ginger ale. It does appear to come from Harry McElhone’s book, but he is no more forthcoming than the Savoy authors. A fine, if somewhat plain cocktail. To be honest, I think it would be quite a bit better if you built it over ice and topped it up with ginger ale. But that’s just me…

Q: As we were talking, it came up that Neyah had worked for a period for a large corporate chain which shall remain nameless.  It seemed apropos to ask if this background served him well when running a bar program which does as much volume as NOPA does.

A: Absolutely.  Working for them was like a boot camp.  Not only that, but these big corporate programs understand how much of the business is about process rather than simply making drinks.  When I was working for them, I had three shifts behind the bar and then three days for other tasks.  Inventory, ordering, developing processes.

Mr. Manhattan

Mr. Manhattan Cocktail

Crush one lump of sugar in a little water.
Then crush four leaves of fresh green mint. and add –
1 Dash Lemon Juice. (1/2 teaspoon)
4 Dashes Orange Juice. (1/4 oz or so fresh Orange Juice)
1 Glass Gin. (2 oz Bols Genever)

(Muddle sugar cube in Lemon Juice and Orange Juice.  Add mint and gently press.  Add Gin and…)  Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

When we were thinking about this, it occurred to Neyah to try with Bols Genever. To me that totally made sense, given the 19th Century style recipe. Delicious! The winner of the afternoon. Neyah’s comment was, “I wish this had a better name, because I want to put it on the list!”

Modern No 1

Modern Cocktail (No. 1)

1 Dash Orange Bitters. (NOPA House Made)
2 Dashes Jamaica Rum. (Gosling’s Black Seal)
1 Dash Absinthe. (St. George)
2 Dashes Lemon Juice. (1/2 teaspoon or so)
1 Glass Scotch Whisky. (2 oz John, Mark, and Robbo, Rich and Spicy One)
(Dash Simple Syrup)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

We tasted this and it just wasn’t doing it for us. A touch of simple brought out both the richness of the scotch and the flavor of the rum.

Q: Talking about their ingredients at NOPA, I realized how much of what they make in house.  Grenadine, liqueurs, bitters, etc.  I asked how important house made ingredients were to his ideas for the bar at NOPA.

A: Originally it was my conception to have almost all the drink modifiers made in house.  While we make many bitters, syrups and liqueurs in house, I found I couldn’t keep up with the amounts needed for vermouth and some of the others.  I’m especially excited about an orange infusion which I started last year and is about ready.  It was an all season long infusion, where I added seasonal citrus to the batch as we progressed through the citrus season.  Starting with kumquats and clementines and then moving to navels, seville, etc.  I’m hoping to use it both for our house orange bitters and an orange liqueur.

Modern No. 2

Modern Cocktail (No. 2)

1 Dash Orange Bitters. (NOPA House Made)
1 Dash Absinthe. (St. George)
1 Dash Grenadine. (NOPA House Made)
1/3 Scotch Whisky. (3/4 oz John, Mark, and Robbo, Rich and Spicy One)
2/3 Sloe Gin. (1 1/2 oz Plymouth Sloe Gin)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

We both thought this a fine, tasty cocktail. Definitely worth the try, if you have Sloe Gin and Scotch in the house.

Original Cocktail:
Dented Bently:
1 oz. Calvados
1 oz. Dubonnet
1/4 oz. Nocino

Stir gently with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Like the Slanted Door, NOPA is an incredibly busy restaurant. On a busy night the restaurant will do over 500 covers. One of the amazing things to me, when I go in, is how many mixed drinks I see out at tables. Their version of the Old Cuban seems to be at nearly every other table in the restaurant. Yet they hold the bar and service staff to an incredibly high standard. All fresh squeezed juice. Many homemade ingredients, High quality spirits, Jigger pouring, etc. Like the Slanted Door, NOPA is proof that, if the commitment is there from the staff and management, a high volume restaurant can successfully run a drink program without sacrificing quality.

For me, I can think of no higher praise for Mr. White, and the the drink program at NOPA, than to say, while there are many restaurants and bars in San Francisco, there are few I will as unreservedly recommend for cocktails as NOPA.

Also, the Pork Chop is one of the best I’ve ever had.

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.

Melba Cocktail

Melba Cocktail

Melba Cocktail

2 Dashes Grenadine. (2/3 teaspoon Homemade Grenadine)
2 Dashes Absinthe. (2/3 teaspoon Verte de Fougerolles Absinthe)
The Juice of 1/4 Lemon or 1/2 Lime. (Juice 1/2 lime)
1/2 Glass Bacardi Rum. (1 oz Montecristo Silver)
1/2 Glass Swedish Punch. (1 oz Homemade Swedish Punsch)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass. (If desired add a cherry, preferably Luxardo or Toschi.)

I had high hopes for the Melba, but I’m not quite sure it lived up to them.

A very good cocktail, that I could imagine being popular, it just doesn’t quite have the magic of the very similar Corpse Reviver No. 2 (with Swedish Punsch).

By pushing the sweet/sour focus out a bit further, it loses the refreshing lightness of the Corpse Reviver. Ends up being a bit heavy.

Still, all in all, a tasty cocktail. One of the few I can think of involving Absinthe and Rum. Definitely some promise there!

This post is one in a series documenting my ongoing effort to make all of the cocktails in the Savoy Cocktail Book, starting at the first, Abbey, and ending at the last, Zed.