Blood and Sand at The Manhattan Cocktail Classic MCC

This drink’s name is a tribute to the 1922 silent movie Blood and Sand, which stars Rudolph Valentino as a poor young Spaniard who eventually becomes a great matador.

Blood and Sand

A Glenfacias Scotch cocktail from the 2012 Manhattan Cocktail Classic

Yield: 1 cocktail

Cook Time:10 minutes


1 oz. Cherry Heering

1 oz. Scotch, Glenfarclas 10 year

1 oz. Sweet Vermouth, Dolin Rouge

1 oz. fresh squeezed orange juice

DIRECTIONSFill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add all the ingredients and shake well, Strain the drink into a coupe. 

Bartender’s best: Cuban Missile on

Behind the drink: Since the portions are large at Asia de Cuba, patrons are often encouraged to share dishes. This concept led to the thought that the restaurant should offer a sharing cocktail menu, as well. The Cuban Missile was created by bartender Angelo Vieira, who envisioned a festive, tropical cocktail that was dressed up and elegant.

What it is: A punchy, tikilike cocktail that contains three kinds of rum, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, fresh juices, Cherry Heering and angostura bitters.

What the bartender says: “This sharing drink is great for parties. It is easy to make, easy to find the ingredients, and easy to replicate in a punch bowl. Nothing in it is pre-made, such as an infusion or syrup, and it can be prepared in advance.”

Fun facts: Angostura bitters are named for the town in which they were created, Angostura, Venezuela. Dr. Johann Siegert, surgeon general to the armies of Simon Bolivar, created the bitters to use in his medical practice. Best known for their appearance in whiskey cocktails, angostura bitters are now made in Trinidad. The original “cherry Brandy,” Cherry Heering is an essential ingredient in the tiki cocktail the Singapore Sling.

Cuban Missile (sharing for two)

1 ounce Bacardi white rum

1 ounce Bacardi eight-year rum

1/2 ounce Jack Daniel’s Honey

1/2 ounce Bacardi 151

2 ounces orange juice

3/4 ounces Cherry Heering

3 dashes Angostura bitters

3/4 ounces lemon juice

Combine ingredients in an ice-filled shaker. Shake and strain into an ice-filled, bowl-shaped glass. Garnish with an orange slice, a maraschino cherry and a sprig of mint. At Asia de Cuba, an oversize fish-bowl type of glass with a stem is used.

“the charlatan” on

The Charlatan

2 oz Punt e Mes
3/4 oz Campari
1/2 oz Cherry Heering
2 dash Regan’s Orange Bitters

Stir the ingredients without ice in a mixing glass.  Flame 3 orange twists to coat the inside of an Old Fashioned glass with orange oils.  Pour in the drink, and garnish with a single unflamed orange twist.  This is a room temperature cocktail.

After Trina’s, I was in the mood for a digestif-style nightcap while Andrea was wanting something light.  As a compromise I suggested Maksym Pazuniak’s the Charlatan that appeared in Gary Regan’s Annual Manual for Bartenders 2012.  Unlike the 2011 edition, there was no large collection of recipes (that will be in a separate book coming out in July); however, there were a few recipes scattered throughout including this one in a section on room temperature cocktails.  Maks and others shared their thoughts on unchilled cocktails in a good article in StarChefs last year.

The Charlatan first presented orange oil aromas that later morphed into grape notes from the Punt e Mes.  The sip showcased the fruit flavors from the Punt e Mes and Cherry Heering, and the swallow offered up the Punt e Mes’ and Campari’s bitter notes with hints of orange on the finish.  I was intrigued at how the Cherry Heering brought out the fruit notes of the Punt e Mes and how Campari complemented its bitter ones.  In the end, the Charlatan served as a good but light digestif.


New Food & Wine cocktails 2012 book with the classic Blood and Sand











KC bartenders revive the tang of old-time ‘shrubs’ on

Making shrubs

Shrub making is a free-form process, one that’s more about personal preference than strictly adhering to recipes. Most bartenders recommend starting with equal parts fruit, sugar and vinegar, and then adjusting quantities to taste.

Shrubs are best when you begin with fresh, flavor-packed fruit. Pick your favorite and rinse it well. Then remove any pits or seeds and cut fruit into chunks. Strawberries can be sliced; other berries can be mashed with a potato masher. Don’t worry about peeling anything. Oranges, limes or other citrus can be either sliced or cut into chunks without peeling, depending on your method.

Next, decide which sweetener to use. Granulated sugar makes a good standby, and superfine granulated sugar will dissolve even faster. But you can also try brown, raw, Turbinado or other sugars, or even molasses, agave nectar or honey.

Then choose your vinegar. Again, there are plenty of options, including apple cider, white wine, Champagne, red wine, rice, balsamic, white balsamic vinegars.

Read more here:

Westport Cafe & Bar’s Blood and Glass
Makes 1 drink
1 1/2 ounce Famous Grouse Scotch whisky
1/2 ounce Dolin Rouge sweet vermouth
1/2 ounce Cherry Heering cherry brandy
1/2 ounce Orange Shrub (recipe at left)
Orange twist, for garnish

Add all ingredients except orange twist to mixing glass. Fill with ice and stir until well-chilled. Strain into a coupe glass and garnish with orange twist.

Per drink: 168 calories (none from fat), no fat, no cholesterol, 5 grams carbohydrates, no protein, 5 milligrams sodium, no dietary fiber.

Read more here:

Cheers to Mom!

Mother’s Day is a time to give back to the ladies in our lives and I think the gift of a finely prepared cocktail is welcome at most homes.

We bookend the occasion with easy-to-make cocktails designed for the aperitif course and dessert course. The Cherry Jussara welcomes Spring time notions of açai berry, cherry, and citrus for a lovely start to the afternoon.

A decadent ending to dinner comes in the form of Nonna’s Coffee, a dessert martini of amaro, coffee liqueur, and whole milk.

The Cherry Jussara is a marriage of berry and citrus elements designed by the VeeV Açai Spirit Company. VeeV Açai Spirit Liqueur is always a great option for low calorie enjoyment while delivering flavor that shines through many cocktails. Here we combine with the contemporary classic Cherry Heering to create a firm berry base to the recipe. Freshly squeezed lemon juice provides the essential backbone of acidity necessary for a balanced cocktail. A dash of Wholesome Sweeteners agave nectar keeps this acidity in check by mellowing the tartness just a bit. Feel free to substitute simple syrup for agave nectar. Simply combine two parts sugar to one part boiling water. Do not stop boiling until sugar is fully dissolved, stirring constantly. Let cool and bottle. This will keep in the refrigerator for future cocktail recipes. Garnish with a fresh mint sprig. It’s visually appealing and quite refreshing with crudité and salty snacks to start the afternoon.

Cherry Jussara
■1 ½ oz VeeV Açai Spirit Liqueur
■¾ oz Cherry Heering Liqueur
■1 oz Freshly squeezed lemon juice
■Dash of Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Blue Agave Nectar
■Fresh Mint

Combine VeeV, Cherry Heering, freshly squeezed lemon juice, and agave nectar in cocktail shaker. Fill with ice and shake vigorously. Serve in rocks glass over ice. Garnish with sprig of fresh mint.

Nonna’s Coffee could certainly be serves as a “liquid dessert” but it will be delicious alongside anything chocolate, from brownies to cakes. Averna Amaro lends notes of cocoa, anise, and spice while Coffee Heering kicks in rich espresso and baker’s chocolate flavors. Combine these with a little dairy, whole milk in this case, and you have a decadent (but not overly sweet) dessert martini! You already saved calories on the Cherry Jussara so no need to count here!!

Nonna’s Coffee
■1 oz Averna Amaro
■1 oz Coffee Heering Liqueur
■2 oz Horizon Organic Whole Milk
■Whole or Ground Grenadian Nutmeg

Start by filling a martini glass with ice and water, placing it to the side for now. Combine Averna, Coffee Heering, and whole milk in cocktail shaker and fill with ice. Dump ice water from martini glass and strain shker into your CHILLED vessel. It’s important to get glass as cold as possible before pouring. No one wants to have dairy at room temperature! Once strained, garnish with a pinch of ground Grenadian nutmeg. Enjoy this Mother’s Day and throughout the year. Cheers!

Join us for a special Networking event with Deborah Grayson Riegel author of Oy Vey on May 22

Isn’t a Strategy. Heering liqueurs and refreshments will be served. This is a networking event so come with business cards and a 60 second elevator pitch
Now you can have a personal coach in your back pocket, ready to help you navigate the inevitable “oy veys” that pop up in work and life.
Internationally renowned coach, acclaimed speaker, and syndicated columnist Deborah Grayson Riegel travels the globe training executives, senior managers, and professionals at the world’s most recognized companies and organizations, including American Express, Condé Nast, Jewish Federations of North America, the US Army, and Toyota. Now Riegel has distilled her wise and witty stories, practical tips, and thought-provoking exercises into 25 easy-to-follow strategies that will help YOU achieve the personal and professional success you seek. You’ll discover how to identify your hot buttons, increase your trust in others, come to terms with “good enough,” network effectively, and more. As Riegel puts it, “Your perspective on life can hold you back, or it can get you closer to where you want to go.” This book will help you adjust your perspective—with good humor, kindness, and a little wisdom from the Jewish tradition—to get you moving in the right direction.
When: Tuesday, May 22nd 2012
Time: 7pm
Where: 382 Central Park West, Apt 4A
Cost: $15 online, $20 at the door
(includes a goody bag and a copy of the book)
Event sponsored

Our Award winning In-Store Mixologist… Amathus Fine Wine & Spirits UK

Huge congratulations to Nick, our resident spirits expert, in winning silver and
bronze at the Drinks International, International Cocktail Challenge for two of
his wonderful creations. First up was the Choco de Cana, featuring our very own
Flor de Cana rum, winning the silver medal and taking bronze was the Rebel Cherry

Rebel Cherry Flip

4 Cocktail Cherries

40ml Cherry Heering

20ml Rebel Yell Bourbon

1 whole egg

Add all the
ingredients to a Boston shaker with ice and shake it long and hard. Fine strain
into a rocks glass. Garnish with freshly grate nutmeg.

A Taste of Mess Hall, Opening This Summer in Los Feliz

Say what you will about Los Feliz, but having another high-quality food option is something locals and visitors alike will welcome. This June, Mess Hall is set to open in the former Louise’s space, bringing with it thoughtful cocktails, and lively comfort classics.

To give diners a taste of what’s to come, Mess Hall popped up Friday night via a Test Kitchen stint at Short Order. In the kitchen was Mess Hall chef Keith Silverton, and behind the bar were beverage pros Julian Cox and Josh Goldman. A four-course menu and a short set of cocktails were served up, giving Mess Hall’s future customers a chance to chow down on some promising grub in advance.

On Silverton’s Test Kitchen menu, which opened with a single plump oyster nestled on ice in a galvanized mini-bucket, were old school dishes with a contemporary flair. Beef tartar was served cradled in a shell of crisped parmesan with a side of pickled peppers, while a brandade of potato became even more lushly supple thanks to the runny yolk of the sunny side up egg sitting on its golden top.

Entrees were rich and hearty, like a Red Baron Trout Schnitzel with a spicy aioli and a creamy cup of potato gratin, and a buttermilk fried chicken dish (I, alas, didn’t sample). But here’s the story of a love affair between a girl and a piece of meat: The standout of the night, a generous “hog chop” glistening with butter and paired with cheddar grits and tangy mustard greens that helped cut the savory heft of flavors. That chop, incidentally, was the best I’d ever had, thanks to its juicy ham-like qualities and perfect seasoning. Hey, I’m not going to try to marry a pork chop, but, look, I’m not going to kick this one out of bed, okay? It was terrific.

For dessert, a buttermilk shake in which you dipped a sandwich of chocolate cookies, toasty marshmallow, and buttery caramel–a fun punctuation to a great night signaling great meals to come.

Libations were complex and herbal, like Under the Boardwalk, (Tequila Ocho, aromatics and oyster leaf–a lettuce describe not inaccurately to us as “a vegan oyster’), or The Glass Kisser (Buffalo Trace Kentucky Bourbon, apple three ways, and mint), and also classics re-visited, like the Singapore Sling (St George Botanivore Gin, Benedictine, Cherry Heering).

Stay tunes for news of Mess Hall’s Los Feliz debut.

The Art of Crafting a Great Cocktail in Chicago

Mixology is about the craft, and sometimes even the sheer science, behind the ingredients, the presentation, and above all, taste of a great beverage. In Chicago, it’s not hard to find restaurants and bars that prize cocktails mixed to please their patron’s palates.

At Sepia ( in the Loop, head bartender Josh Pearson is responsible for the creation and constant evolution of the restaurant’s cocktail program, which emphasizes the classics while still instilling seasonal notes and international influences. Pearson thinks that drinking in a great bar should be fun (which we whole-heartedly agree with). A couple of the restaurant’s current offerings demonstrate this playful nature:

  • R&R Smash -Templeton rye, Carpano Antica vermouth, cherry heering, brandied cherries, rosemary, lemon, old fashioned bitters

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