The PDT Project: #3 Cup on

The #2 drink in the PDT Cocktail Book is the #3 Cup. If you like the Pimm’s Cup, then you cannot pass up this one, which appeared on the PDT menu in the spring of 2009. Created by former PDT bartender Gerry Corcoran, the drink’s name is a reference to the now defunct Pimm’s No. 3, which was essentially a liqueur with a brandy base. There used to be various Pimm’s bottlings, ranging from No. 1 to No. 6, with each number corresponding to a different base spirit. All that remains in the states is the gin-based Pimm’s No. 1.

#3 Cup
1 oz Hine V.S.O.P. Cognac
1 oz House Ginger Beer (recipe below)
.75 oz Martini Sweet Vermouth
.5 oz Marie Brizard Orange Curacao
.5 oz Cherry Heering
.5 oz Lemon Juice
4-5 Mint Leaves (plus 1 sprig for garnish)
2 Slices Cucumber (unpeeled)
2 Slices Orange (2 half wheels; reserve 1 for garnish)

Tools: Muddler, shaker, strainer
Glassware: chilled, ice-filled Collins glass

: In the shaker tin gently muddle the mint, cucumber, and one orange slice. Add the remaining ingredients, then shake and strain into the ice-filled Collins glass. Add the mint sprig and remaining orange slice as garnish.

A cursory glance at this drink’s ingredient list might cast some intimidation, but it’s actually quite an easy drink to assemble. The key is to have a prepared mis en place, and believe me you’ll want to because it’s an incredibly delicious and refreshing drink. In fact you should definitely have a mis en place going because chances are you’re going to want more than one, especially on a nice spring day. Its relatively low alcohol content ensures you can knock back a few without getting knocked over.

Properly Sauced: The Blood and Sand on

In a truly ironic twist, U.S. prohibition has provided us with some of our tastiest and most iconic cocktails. Since irony is our current standard for affectation, it’s not surprising that this era’s cocktails are being resurrected, reconstructed and consumed by the barrelful. The underappreciated Blood and Sand cocktail isn’t as in vogue as other whiskey-based drinks like the Manhattan or Old Fashioned, but the scotch-based cocktail stands as a great temperance-era treat. We wanted to see how the cocktail wizards at the Whistler in Logan Square would fair with a Blood and Sand.

With a romantic name lifted from the title of the Rudolph Valentino bullfighting film “Blood and Sand,” the bite of Scotch is certainly the horns on this drink. Though scotch isn’t likely to bring to mind matadors or the sands of Spain, we’ll take a badass name over cultural relevancy any day.

Orange juice is the main mixer for this drink, which sounds odd – and it is – but when mixed correctly, the combination is sublime. Served up in a snifter, the smoke and oak flavor of the scotch hits you immediately – it’s warming and full bodied. The Orange juice compliments the scotch as a finish, leaving a lip smacking sweet and viscous flavor.

The texture of the Blood and Sand is one of its main draws. It’s like your mouth is playing host to an identity crisis – dry to salivation, smoky to sweet. The Whistler’s Eric Henry, who prepared our Blood and Sand, added a few drops of Laphroaig Whisky. Laphroaig is not for the faint of heart; some say it’s like drinking a campfire. The few drops were enough to change the flavor of the cocktail, but as fans of daring flavors we loved the addition of the peat-heavy scotch.

If you want to impress a date or your taste buds, trade your Manhattan for something a little less stiff, and order yourself a Blood and Sand. Plus, we’ve heard that Orange Juice is good for you.

Blood and Sand
2 oz Scotch
1 oz Orange Juice
1 oz  Cherry Heering
1 oz vermouth
A few drops of Angostura Bitters

Combine all ingredients, add to shaker and shake with ice to mix. Strain into a snifter or into an Old Fashioned glass.

By Kyle Thacker

Napa Rose New Cocktails – Bitter Storm

Napa Rose at Disney’s Grand Californian Resort & Spa in Anaheim, California
is known for its outstanding food (it is an award winning restaurant after all).
But it also has fantastic, innovative cocktails as well.

Recently general manager Philipp Tosques chanllenged three of his bartenders to
create new drinks. They include British Spitfire – Veev Acai, Domaine de
Canton Ginger and fresh lemon honey syrup; and Equinox with Calvados, Liquor 43,
Goldschlager, Cherry Heering and fresh lime juice.

They have shared their
recipe for Bitter Storm!

Bitter Storm

¾ ounce Bulleit Bourbon
¾ ounce Fernet-Branca
½ ounce Cherry Heering
½ ounce Poire William brandy
½ ounce Orgeat syrup
¾ ounce lemon
Grapefruit peel, for garnish

  • Pour all ingredients into a shaker; fill with ice and vigorously shake for
    30 seconds.
  • Strain into a tall chilled classed filled with ice. Garnish with grapefruit


Who Needs a Bartender When You Can Have This at The James Chicago? on

Ever wish you could crack open one of those beautiful in-room bottles of bourbon or gin and concoct a fancy cocktail right in your own room? We can’t tell you how many times we wish we could, especially as hotel rooms keep getting swankier and harder to leave.

Sadly, enjoying your own fancy cocktail in the comfort of your own fancy room has typically meant some kind of trip out of the cozy environs, whether to the drug store or the hotel gift shop for the bare minimums. Who wants to do that? Desperation may drive you to the ridiculously overpriced mini-bar for a sad pour of vodka and seven, but that never compares to the more beautiful elixirs available in the lobby or bar.

If you’re not one to settle for mediocre cocktailing but pine for more hotel room downtime, you’re gonna love The James Chicago’s new In-Room Cocktail Experience.

Make one phone call to room service and you’ll get all the fresh and perfectly measured accoutrements you need to mix five – that’s right, FIVE — sweet cocktails. You’ll still need to purchase the necessary liquor from the pantry, but for $28 more, you’ll get a bucket of ice, a shaker and strainer, fresh-cut citrus fruits like limes and oranges, the “American Bar” cocktail book with over 200 recipes, and perfectly proportioned mixers like simple syrup, bitters and Lillet Blanc.

You won’t need to thumb through the book unless you want to as the five in-room cocktail recipes are already printed on a pint glass that comes standard in all rooms. Mix up a Corpse Reviver 2 (Gin, Cointreau, Lillet Blanc, Lemon), an Old Havana (Rum, Simple Syrup, Lime, Bitters) or a Blood & Sand(Bourbon, Cherry Heering, Sweet Vermouth, Orange) for starters. Chill and soak in the relaxed modern comfort of a James hotel room and all its dark wood, interesting artifacts and awesome lighting.

Five fancy drinks later, you could be feeling really fine at The James Chicago.

Black-tailed Whole Hare cocktail on

Double Entendre

Last week for Thursday Drink Night, the theme was Double Entendre,
and with a little alcohol, the dirty double meanings started coming out with
ease from the mixologists who stopped in to Mixoloseum’s chatroom that

Dan Chadwick of Kindred Cocktails started the fun with this complex rum
Black-tailed Whole Hare
• 1 oz Cruzan Blackstrap
• 1/2 oz J.Wray Overproof White Rum
• 1/2 oz Luxardo Amaro Abano

1/2 oz Cherry Heering
• 1/4 oz Lemon Juice
Shake with ice and strain into
a rocks glass filled with fresh ice.

Singapore Sling – A drink every bit as iconic as the Singapore Merlion

Mention the Singapore Sling and it would be a decent conversation topic with any foreigners you meet. While few Singaporeans would actually order it themselves in the bar, the Singapore Sling is a world famous cocktail and an iconic drink for visiting foreigners. It is little wonder that brilliant local minds have started marketing a pre-mix version of the cocktail to be made available to the rest of the world.

This particular bottle of concentrated pre-mixed Singapore Sling was an impulsive pickup from the airport when I came back from the recent Jakarta trip. The lone bottle of Singapore Sling was hiding quietly among other bottled liqueurs on the shelf, an indication that probably no Singaporeans from a return trip would be willing to carry her off the shelves.

I did.

Even if instructions on the manual state that the concentrated Singapore Sling pre-mix can be enjoyed neat on the rocks, I will strongly oppose anyone doing that since without the balance of another souring agent like pineapple juice, the mix is too sweet and bitter to be enjoyed. A friend who tasted it even stated that the taste difference was not too different from cough syrup.

For the best results, it’s still best to mix 1/4 of the concentrated mix with 3/4 pineapple juice as on the instructions, resulting in a slightly orange red foamy concoction that is the iconic Singapore Sling.

To be frank, this Singapore Sling does taste a little different from the ones I tasted from different bars in Singapore, but every of those also serves a slightly different tasting Sling.

There are perhaps a million different recipes for mixing a Singapore Sling that one can find on the internet nowadays. With the relevant spirits and ingredients available it is really not too hard to make a Singapore Sling from scratch either, even though for a lazy man like myself will probably stick to mixing it out from a concentrate. Here’s a recipe I found online to build a Singapore Sling from scratch.

For those who are interested in original recipe, one of the scribbled recipes is still on display at the Raffles Hotel Museum.

Singapore Sling

1.5 ounces Gin
0.5 once Cherry Heering
0.25 once Cointreau
0.25 ounce Benedictine
4 ounces Pineapple Juice
0.25 ounce Lime Juice
0.33 ounce Grenadine
1 dash Angostura Bitter

Garnish: Cherry and slice of pineapple.
Shake with ice. Strain into an ice filled Collins glass.

It is also good to know a little bit about the roots of the Singapore Sling. It is of course invented here in Singapore, by a bartender named Ngiam Tong Boon while working at the Long Bar in Raffles Hotel Singapore back in 1910s.

Raffles Hotel was the home away from home for Westerners stuck in the East during the colonial era. During that time gin slings were the most popular drinks ordered. It was then that the clever Mr Ngian created a tropical cocktail sling that was not only delectable but also easily recognizable. Since then, the Singapore Sling has made it onto the world stage.

Sazerac Gastro Lounge: Buzz on bars, Cherry Heering & Xanté in punch bowl

The Drinks: You could opt for the classic Sazerac (rye, cognac or bourbon with absinthe and Peychaud’s bitters for $12), invented in New Orleans before the Civil War. The real fun, however, starts with Anthony’s handcrafted concoctions, such as the 782 Sazerac (Maker’s Mark bourbon infused with lemongrass and black pepper with Peychaud’s, in-house vanilla gomme syrup, absinthe and lemon essence for $13). His own Mr. Marc Etting, a drink based on his past amorous misadventures, features Banff Ice Vodka, Triple Sec, San Pellegrino Aranciata Rossa, pomegranate and absinthe mist, for $11. The powerful Shin Ichi (Daté’s cocktail) consists of ginseng and ginger-infused bourbon, ginger beer, cherry bitters, rosemary-sage tincture, orange and lime and goes for $10. If you’ve got a party, you can try the OOOOOHHH YEEAAAHHHH!!! punch bowl (Brut, Leblon Cachaca, Heering cherry, Xante pear, San Pellegrino Aranciata Rossa, orange and lemon for $50, serving four to six).

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