Favorite Drinks From Our Favorite Bartenders
Thursday, Feb 09,2012
If you really want to impress this Valentine's Day, play bartender and learn how to make a specialty cocktail. We asked some of our favorite bartenders for their favorite drink recipes and wow did they come up with some tasty libations.
Ward Halliday, Bottega and Highlands Bar and Grill
The Jimmy Hendrick's is a gin cocktail made with Hendrick's gin and the fruit of the season, blood orange. Not only is this drink stout enough to be a man's drink, it is pretty enough without being sweet to serve to your Valentine of the more gentler sex.
Jimmy Hendrick's (on the menu at Bottega)
1 oz Hendicks Gin
1/2 oz Lillet Blanc
1 oz blood orange juice squeezed
Float of club soda
Combine and roll over ice.
Sloan Stevens, Highlands Bar and Grill
I have two favorite cocktails both originated in the greatest city in the world, and one is named for it. So, in keeping with the seasonal philosophy instilled in me by Chef Stitt, they will cover what seems to be the only two seasons we have in Alabama anymore - summer and fall.
2 oz Stoli Vodka. Use whatever vodka you prefer, but I always use Stoli for this and most cocktails because it's flavor can stand up to the sweetness of the cocktail.
2 oz Homemade Ginger Syrup. (recipe follows) You can adjust this amount based on the desired sweetness, but you need the spiciness of the ginger to make this cocktail properly.
Squeeze 2 large lime wedges and drop in.
1-2 Dashes Angostura Bitters.
Top with soda water.
This refreshing cocktail is always a great choice when the weather gets warm. Careful though, it can kick like a mule. Omit the Vodka for a refreshing alcohol-free beverage.
2 Cups Sugar
2 Cups water
One Large Ginger Root Diced (it is not necessary to peel the ginger)
Bring to a boil, and allow to simmer for ten minutes covered. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Strain through a fine mesh strainer, and transfer to a glass storage vessel. Keep refrigerated.
Manhattan (One story about the origin of the Manhattan is from the Monkey Bar in the biggest jungle of them all NYC. There are varying stories as to the origin of the Manhattan.)
2 oz Jack Daniels Single Barrel Tennessee Whiskey ( Maker's Mark is fine too, but Jack Daniels is literally my family)
1 oz Carpano Antica Formula Italian Sweet Vermouth ( This is very important)
2 Dashes Angostura Bitters
Stir (yes, stir)** for 20 revolutions, no more, no less. Strain into a cocktail glass and enjoy. Garnish with a Brandied Cherry
** For the love of God do not shake or muddle this cocktail. It will be watered down, and too cold to taste the complexities of the spirit and the vermouth. A Manhattan is always tasty, but I like to have them around football season, and until it is time to start drinking Moscow Mules!
Tip: The vermouth is sold at Whole Foods on the shelf with the dessert wines and ports, however if you talk to Michael Carpree at Lou's Pub and Package, I am sure he will be able to help you procure a bottle at a more reasonable price.
Justin Gober, Bottega
Just in time for Valentine's Day, a drink using Italian apertif and good ole Southern beer.
2 oz Aperol
2 sugar cubes
2 sage leaves
2 grapefruit segments
1.5 oz Good People IPA
Start with 2 oz of Aperol, 2 sugar cubes, 1 grapefruit segments,and juice from 1/2 lime. In a rocks glass, muddle. Add 2 sage leaves and ice. Shake and pour back into rocks glass/ Top with 1.5 oz of Good People IPA. Garnish with grapefruit segment.
Jonathon Sealy, Highlands Bar and Grill
I love Cachaca, it is very strong and distinct. Maraschino is a wonderful additive to almost any drink. Blood oranges have a very short season which happens to be right now and they are just so pretty. That is my story in coming up with this cocktail.
My Bleeding Heart
1 1/2 oz Cachaca
1/2 oz Maraschino liqueur
1 oz freshly squeezed blood orange juice
Cube of brown sugar
Muddle together and serve on rocks in a cocktail glass.