Fine and Dandy Cocktail

Fine and Dandy Cocktail

1/4 Lemon Juice. (1/2 oz fresh lemon juice)
1/4 Cointreau. (1/2 oz Cointreau)
1/2 Plymouth Gin. (1 oz Plymouth Gin)
1 Dash Angostura Bitters.

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

Well, it is a “Fine and Dandy” cocktail. It doesn’t quite match the special magic of either the Pegu Club or the Sidecar. Still, all in all, quite enjoyable.

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.

Fifty-Fifty Cocktail

Fifty-Fifty Cocktail

1/2 Dry Gin. (1 1/2 oz Tanqueray)
1/2 French Vermouth. (1 1/2 oz Dolin French Vermouth)
(A dash of Regan’s and a dash of Fee’s Orange Bitters)

Shake (stir, please) well and strain into cocktail glass. (Garnish with Olive.)

Yep, that’s tasty all right.

Sometimes there are few things better than a nice cold Tanqueray or Junipero Martini. Still really enjoying the Dolin in these vermouth heavy Martini-like cocktails.

The serendipity of going from the Fernet Cocktail to the Fifth Avenue to the Fifty-Fifty is pretty amusing. Nice to have a bit of variety in your cocktails.

What’s the story with the “Fitty-Fitty”? Was it the addition of Orange bitters that made them decide to give it an updated name? It is much better with the bitters…

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.

Fancy Cocktail

Fancy Cocktail
(6 People)
Pour into the shaker 5 glasses of Cognac and a dessertspoonful of Angostura Bitters. Shake thoroughly and serve, adding a little champagne and a piece of lemon-rind after having rubbed the edges of the glasses with lemon syrup.

I usually make this cocktail, something like this:

Fancy Cocktail for one

Rub the rim of a cocktail glass with a slice of lemon. Frost the edge with superfine or caster sugar. Pour into the shaker 2 oz Cognac and a generous dash of Angostura Bitters. Stir with cracked ice until well chilled, and strain into the frosted glass. Top up with a bit of champagne, squeeze a piece of lemon peel over the glass and drop it in.

Cocktail disambiguation via David Wondrich’s “Imbibe!

In Mr. Wondrich’s book, he divides the types of “cocktail” into the following categories, “Original”, “Plain”, “Fancy”, “Improved”, and “Old-Fashioned”.

“Original Cocktail”, is ye olde bittered sling, specification of spirits, bitters, sugar, and water. Nutmeg optional.

“Plain Cocktail” is Gum syrup, bitters, spirits, and curacao served on the rocks with a twist of lemon.

“Fancy Cocktail” is Gum syrup, bitters, spirits, and curacao, stirred with ice, and strained into another glass and garnished with a twist of lemon.

“Improved Cocktail” is Gum syrup, bitters, spirits, maraschino liqueur, absinthe, stirred with ice, strained into another glass and garnished with a twist of lemon.

And “Old-fashioned Cocktail” is the “original” served with rocks instead of water and a lemon twist instead of nutmeg.

Anyway, he notes the “Fancy” category sometimes included a frosted rim, a la Crusta, or a top up of champanski. Hey, who would argue? Though, I wonder what sort of individual would say, “Excuse me barkeep, believe I will have a fancy brandy cocktail, thank you!”

As the “Savoy Cocktail Book” seems to have the most bad luck transcribing these pre-prohibition of cocktails, (see the Savoy “Coffee Cocktail” and “Brandy Crusta” for other poorly transcribed examples,) their “Fancy Cocktail” recipe makes almost no sense. I mean, how can you “rub the edges of a glass with lemon syrup”? Just sounds really messy to me. They have also decided to solidify on Cognac and leave out the Curacao. No tremendous loss there.

I’ve sort of gone with the Chicago method for the “Fancy Cocktail” and left it at that.

I like the “Chicago Cocktail” and I like the “Fancy Cocktail.” Guess that makes me some sort of flannel wearing dandy. Woo!

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.

Fallen Angel Cocktail

Fallen Angel Cocktail

1 Dash Angostura Bitters.
2 Dashes Crème de Menthe. (1/2 bar spoon Brizard Crème de Menthe)
The Juice of 1 Lemon or 1/2 Lime. (Juice 1 lemon)
1 Glass Dry Gin. (2 oz Aviation Gin)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

It has never been made quite clear as to whether this is intended to be taken by the Angel before or after falling; as an encouragement or as a consolation.

Another of my favorite Savoy quotes.

The recipe is sort of odd. I mean the usual ingredient note for cocktails with choice of lemon or lime is, “Juice of 1 lime or 1/2 lemon,” so the fact that this recommends 1/2 lime or a whole lemon is a bit odd. Unfortunately, it’s not a cocktail whose origins have yet been tracked down, so there’s no real way for me to know if it is a typo or not. I chose lemon, and went a little easy on it.

I picked the Aviation Gin, as it seemed the use of lavender in the herb bill might do something interesting with the mint.

I have to admit I expected to dislike this cocktail. I really didn’t think it could possibly be palatable with that much lemon juice against that little sweetener. But, somehow it is. I dunno, I would call it refreshing.

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.

Duppy Cocktail

Duppy Cocktail

Pour 4 1/2 glasses of Whisky (2 oz Asyla Scotch) into a large glass and soak in this a few cloves (for an hour or two). Add 5 or 6 drops of Orange Bitters (Healthy Dash Regan’s, Healthy Dash Fee’s), and lastly put in 1 1/2 glasses of Curacao (3/4 oz Brizard Curacao). Place the lot in the shaker; shake (stir, strain) and serve.

This is a cocktail that got a lot more interesting as it warmed. Chilled, it just tasted pretty much like cold Scotch. As it warmed, the clove and other spices of the orange bitters expressed themselves more fully.

Duppy, from what I can tell, in Jamaican folklore refers to, “restless spirits of the dead that are believed to haunt the living.”

Not sure what Jamaican ghosts have to do with Scotch, cloves, bitters, and curacao. I noticed no otherworldly effects resulting from consuming the cocktail. Perhaps it helps to get rid of them?

However, here’s an odd thing!

Over last years’ holiday I found a 1934 edition of Patrick Gavin Duffy’s “Official Mixer’s Manual”. In this book he gives the “Duppy Cocktail (6 People)” as:

Soak in 4 1/2 Glasses Whiskey; Few Leaves of Clover; 5 or 6 Dashes Orange Bitters; 1 1/4 Glasses Curacao; Shake well in ice, strain and serve.

Given that Mr. Duffy is often far more accurate with recipe transcription than Mr. Craddock, this does give me a bit of pause. From what I remember I didn’t think clover leaves have a great deal of flavor. The flowers, though, appear to sometimes be used to Flavor Syrups and other such things. Puzzling. Well, it appears to be fairly commonly available as an herbal remedy, so I will have to give the Duppy another try!

Red Clover: Herbal Remedies

Red clover also contains the blood-thinning substance coumarin. Coumarin is not unique to red clover; it is found in many other plants, including common grass. In fact, the pleasant sweet smell of freshly cut grass is due to the coumarin compounds. People on anticoagulant drugs such as Coumadin should be cautious of using red clover, as the blood may become too thin.

But, maybe not as crazy sounding as it seems. I mean, Buffalo Grass Vodka has some of these same substances.

So, I soaked a few red clover flowers and a couple leaves…

…in a half cup of wild turkey rye for 12 hours.

2 oz Clover infused Rye
1 oz Luxardo Triplum
generous dash fee’s orange bitters
generous dash regan’s orange bitters

Stir with cracked ice, strain into cocktail glass.

Unfortunately, that was the last of my Wild Turkey Rye, so no side by side comparison of clover vs. non-clover drinks was possible. But, it definitely changed the character of the Rye. More sweet herbal and vanilla-ish notes, I think.

All in all, I think I liked the Scotch/Clove Duppy a bit more. But, I dunno, there was something compelling about the flavors of the clover infused rye…


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.

Dunlop Cocktail

Edit: Retranslated in honor of International Talk Like a Pirate Day.

Dunlop Cocktail

1 Dash Angostura Bitters.
1/3 Sherry. (3/4 oz Don Nuno Dry Oloroso Sherry)
2/3 Rum. (1 1/2 oz Diplomatico Rum)

Stir well an’ strain into cocktail glass. (Squeeze lemon peel o’er glass)

Pretty wide open drink here on th’ ingredient fore. At least ‘t specifies which type o’ bitters!

I started by pickin’ th’ sherry, an’ then headed down t’ th’ garage t’ investigate th’ smells o’ th’ various rums I be havin’ stored down thar. I be thinkin’ dark an’ dry in combination wi’ th’ Sherry, an’ th’ Diplomatico stuck ou’ as an interestin’ combination.

Ended up quite tasty, but really needed th’ added aromatic zip o’ th’ peel t’ brin’ th’ drink t’ life.

This post be one in a series documentin’ me ongoin’ effort t’ make all o’ th’ cocktails in th’ Savoy Cocktail Book, startin’ at th’ first, Abbey, an’ endin’ at th’ last, Zed.

Du Barry Cocktail

Du Barry Cocktail

1 Dash Angostura Bitters.
2 Dashes Absinthe. (Marteau Verte Classic)
1/3 French Vermouth. (3/4 oz Noilly Prat Dry)
2/3 Plymouth Gin. (1 1/2 oz Plymouth Gin)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass. Add slice of orange.

Close, but no cigar?

If I hadn’t made my version of the Fourth Degree Cocktail recently, I would probably enjoy this more. It’s OK. But, splitting the vermouth between sweet and dry is waaaaaay better, at least to my taste. Though, I should try it with my spiffy new Dolin Vermouth. It’s possible, my Noilly Dry was getting a bit tired.

Googling DuBarry, one of the first things that comes up is Marie-Jeanne, Comtesse du Barry, professional courtesan and royal mistress to Louis XV.

Executed during the French Revolution, her last words to the executioner were reported to be, “Encore un moment, monsieur le bourreau, un petit moment,” (“Just a moment, executioner, just a brief moment”).

Even though I enjoyed the Fourth Degree a bit more, there are certainly worse ways to pass the time while waiting for the executioner, than the Du Barry 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.

Josey Packard

This is the second 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.

NOTE: Since writing this up, Josey has moved back to the East Coast. When I last talked to her, she was looking for a bartending gig in the Boston area. I will post an update when I know more. I still, however, recommend putting Alembic on your short list of bars to visit in the San Francisco Bay Area.

After about a month of travel, sickness, and scheduling conflicts, I finally was able to get together with Josey Packard at The Alembic Bar to make some Savoy Cocktails. While we were at it, I asked her a couple questions.

Josey’s BIO: I’m a frequent victim of agape: widely varying passions have led me to several different occupations. A vocalist by training, day jobs for me have included that of seamstress, auto mechanic, office manager, carpenter, editor, audio producer, and flooring installer. A keen interest in cocktail history led me to take up work behind the bar, and it is there where I find myself able to marry both vocation and avocation; I’m proud to call myself a bartender. I developed the signature cocktail for the Boston Athenaeum’s 200th anniversary celebration, and have finalized the recipe for two original cocktails, the Wolfhound and the Northern Spy.

Diki-Diki Cocktail

1/6 Grape Fruit Juice.
1/6 Swedish Punch. (Carlshamm’s Flaggpunsch)
2/3 Calvados. (Le Merton Vieux Calvados)

Shake well and strain into cocktail glass.

For comparison, Josey wanted to try this with both white grapefruit and ruby red grapefruit juice.

I think Josey’s first comment was, “Wow, that’s an adult cocktail!” and her second was, “I could drink the hell out of this!” Given the relatively small amount of Grapefruit juice, we were both a bit surprised that the we preferred the touch of sweetness and additional fruitiness that the Ruby Red Grapefruit brought to the cocktail. It was a subtle difference; but, enough to be noticeable. In any case, I agree with Josey about this cocktail. Definitely one of the highlights so far of the letter “D.”

From Google, as far as I can tell, “Diki-Diki” is a Filipino adjective used to convey “very small.” There is also a small African Antelope called a “Dik-Dik.”

Robert Vermeire, in his book, “Cocktails: How to Mix Them,” notes the following regarding this cocktail:

Diki-Diki is the chief monarch of the Island Ubian (Southern Philipines), who is now 37 years old, weighs 23 lb., and his height is 32 in. The author introduced this cocktail at the Embassy Club in London, February 1922.

Q: What ingredient have you been experimenting mixing with lately?

A: I’ve been experimenting with the Luxardo and Maraska Maraschino liqueurs. I was really surprised to discover how differently they work in cocktails and which gins work best with either one.

We had wanted to try the Desert Healer cocktail as well; but discovered the bar was out of ginger beer.

Devonia Cocktail
(6 People)

Pour into the shaker 4 glasses of Sparkling Cider (2 oz Two Rivers Gravenstein Apple Hard Cider) and 2 glasses of Gin (1 oz Gin.) Add some ice and a few drops of Orange Bitters. Shake lightly and serve.

The Devonia was particularly appealing as The Alembic Bar currently has a very nice Hard Cider from Two Rivers on tap. We first tried it with Plymouth Gin; but it was maybe a bit too adult. The Two Rivers Gravenstein cider is a very dry cider, almost like one of the French champagne-style ciders in character. Interesting, however, to compare the cider on its own with the cider, gin, orange bitters mix. Mixing the cider with the gin, really brought out the earthy, apple peel flavors of the cider, especially in the smell.

For a second try, Josey had the idea to try the Devonia with Anchor Distilling’s new Genevieve Genever-style gin. Even though we had no illusions that this cocktail is really a Devonia, we both preferred it. The complexity of the Genevieve worked well with the cider. And, I might add, the Genevieve is a really interesting taste all on its own. The young whisk(e)y character of the distillate comes across loud and clear in the smell, taste, and body of this new gin. Personally, I can’t wait to get a bottle myself and start experimenting with it.

Q: As Alembic is a restaurant and bar, have you found any particularly good food and cocktail pairings?

A: The obvious one is a Martini with our Catfish Cakes. The chef uses Gin in his Catfish cakes and Tonic in his tartar sauce. With a wet martini, it is a great combination. Another pairing that works very well is the Opera Cocktail with the Oxtails.

Q: Do you have an original cocktail or an old favorite you feel represents you and your style of mixing?

Northern Spy
2 oz. Applejack
1 oz. fresh apple cider (flash-pasteurized ok but no preservatives!)
1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
1/4-1/2 oz. apricot brandy (amount depending on brand/sweetness)
Rim glass with cinnamon-sugar. Shake and strain into rimmed glass. Add a cranberry as garnish.
Note: this cocktail responds well to “royale” treatment, a.k.a. topping with champagne.

I am impossibly biased towards both The Alembic Bar and Josey Packard, so it is tough for me to even pretend impartiality here. Alembic is a great bar and Josey is a wonderfully engaged and engaging bartender.

If you’re in San Francisco and into cocktails, Alembic should be one of the two or three “musts” that goes on your “to do” list. You’ll find Josey there, usually earlier in the evening or during the day, 5 days a week.

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.

Wisconsin Old-Fashioneds, In the Wild

As I mentioned, I recently took a trip to Wisconsin.

Thought I might document a couple of the Old-Fashioneds in the wild.

While the default Wisconsin Old-Fashioned is a Brandy Old-Fashioned Sweet (Brandy with 7-Up) you can always ask for Bourbon or Rye with water instead of soda or 7-up.

This is my father-in-law’s typical Old-Fashioned:

Wisconsin Old-Fashioned

Jim Beam Rye, Sugar, Water, Angostura Bitters, Lemon Twist. Yes, that is a 14 oz Luminarc Working Glass. There were many hangovers before I got the hang of sipping my father-in-law’s Old-Fashioneds. The trick is to sip slowly and add more ice as you go. You do have the option of adding more spirits, but I do not recommend it.

Wisconsin Old-Fashioned

(This picture by Mrs. Flannestad.)

“Rye Old-Fashioned, water” at the Norwood Pines Supper Club, Minocqua, WI. Not sure what brand of Rye. I ordered a Bourbon Old-Fashioned, then said, “Wait a Sec, do you have Rye?” Amazingly, they did. To be honest, it tasted like Sazerac Rye, but that seems unlikely. Definitely not the Beam Rye. Note the cherry boat, which is typical of a Wisconsin Old-Fashioned.

Couple additional notes:

Almost all cocktail drinking at these sorts of supper clubs in Wisconsin is “on the rocks”. You will almost never see an “Up” drink.

At the Norwood Pines I saw the bartender playing with some green substance, ice cream, and a blender.
Oh my gosh! The legendary ice cream version of the Grasshopper! My only regret is I didn’t get a picture of the lovely couple lustily enjoying their Margarita Coupes filled with mountains of neon green, grasshopper flavored ice cream.

Deep Sea Cocktail

Deep Sea Cocktail

Deep Sea Cocktail

1 Dash Absinthe. (Verte de Fougerolles)
1 Dash Orange Bitters. (Regan’s Orange Bitters)
1/2 French Vermouth. (1 1/2 oz Noilly Prat Dry)
1/2 Old Tom Gin. (1 1/2 oz Junipero Gin, dash rich simple syrup)

Shake (stir, please) well and strain into cocktail glass. Add 1 olive (Divina Roasted Red Pepper Stuffed) and squeeze Lemon Peel on top.

Fabulous Martini-like cocktail and a great use for Junipero Gin.

Also, not always that big a fan of the olive in lighter flavored gin martinis. With the Absinthe and orange bitters here, it really is an enjoyable combination.

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.