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How to Make the Ward Eight, or two versions of a perfect summer afternoon cocktail.

May 12, 2014 Nick McAfee 0

This cocktail is rumored to have been created in 1898 to celebrate  the imminent election of Martin M. Lomasney, “the czar of ward eight”, to the General Court of Massachusetts.  Mr. Lomasney’s friends were so confident of the his victory that they asked Tim Hussion, bartender of the Locke-Ober Café in Boston to concoct a cocktail to honor their friend and his strongest supporters: the 8th Ward.  There is also a bit of humor behind this cocktail as not only were they celebrating Mr. Lomasney’s victory the night before the election was actually held, but Mr. Lomasney himself was a staunch prohibitionist.  After tasting this cocktail for the first time, I don’t know how it could make anyone anything but a strong supporter of spirits. The Ward Eight (Modern Version) 2 oz Rye Whiskey 0.5 oz orange juice 0.5 oz lemon juice 0.5 oz grenadine* Pour all ingredients over ice in a shaker. Learn More

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How to Make a Hot Toddy, or the Workhorse of Winter Cocktails

January 11, 2014 Nick McAfee 2

It’s National Hot Toddy Day!  But actually, look it up, it’s a thing.  The hot toddy is a wonderfully versatile hot drink which can be served with almost every imaginable booze and hot drink combination.  To get our footing, the following is a great simple recipe for the hot toddy on which many variations can be made to taste. The Basic Hot Toddy 2 oz Spirit 0.5 oz honey 6 oz hot water Mix all ingredients in a mug and stir with a cocktail spoon until the honey has fully dissolved. Garnish with whatever you like – I love to garnish the basic hot toddy with a small mint sprig or citrus wheel.  Hot toddies were developed sometime in the early 18th century in Scotland.  While no one remembers exactly why it was created, historians believe that the recipe was designed to make the taste of scotch whisky more palatable, Learn More

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Seasonal Special: Six Spiked Ciders Done Right

December 21, 2013 Nick McAfee 0

Winter is cominghere!  As snow fell on the northeastern states this weekend, cocktails made with ice seemed less attractive.  It is the time of year for warm drinks like tea, coffee, hot chocolate, egg nog, and of course apple cider.  Apple cider combines amazingly well with almost any spirit or wine, and there is nothing like a nice warm spiked drink on a freezing snowy day. There are wide variety of great recipes involving hot cider, and these are a couple of my favorites (in no particular order). 1) The Orchard Boulevardier This great drink is a delicious, season appropriate nod to the classic boulevardier cocktail.  The strength of the rye and the bitter-sweetness of the Campari blend well with the sweet vermouth and tart sweetness of the hot cider to make an amazing drink.  Old Overholt or Bulleit Rye work quite well in this drink and Dolin is my go Learn More

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The Twelve Mile Limit, or Celebrating Repeal Day!

December 5, 2013 Nick McAfee 0

Broke & Thirsty may have been gone for a bit, but now it is back up and running, continuing to give you great drink recipes and tips.  Today’s cocktail, the Twelve Mile Limit, is a nod to the 80th anniversary of the repeal of prohibition.  This cocktail is almost as boozy as a Long Island Ice Tea, but is miles ahead when it comes to it’s unique refined flavors and appearance. The Twelve Mile Limit 1 ounce White Rum 0.5 ounces brandy 0.5 ounces rye 0.5 ounces grenadine 0.5 ounce lemon juice (optional) garnish with a lemon twist Pour the rum, brandy, rye, grenadine, and lemon juice to a cocktail shaker filled with ice.  Shake well, until the cocktail is thoroughly chilled.  Strain into a cocktail glass.  Garnish with a lemon twist and serve.  The spirits are important in this cocktail, especially the rum which makes up the majority of Learn More

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How to Make a Ruby Manhattan, or mixing a cocktail the color of blood.

October 9, 2013 Nick McAfee 0

The Ruby Manhattan is one of my favorite examples of a great variation on the versatile Manhattan cocktail.  One simple substitution, ruby port for sweet vermouth completely changes the flavor of the cocktail while it still remain recognizable as a relative of the classic Manhattan. The Ruby Manhattan 2 oz Rye Whiskey 1 oz Ruby Port 2 dashes Angostura Bitters (optional) garnish with an orange twist and/or maraschino cherry Gently stir all ingredients together with ice in a mixing glass.  Strain the cold drink into a chilled cocktail glass and serve garnished with an orange twist or maraschino cherry.  Ruby port is preferable for this cocktail for two reasons: its distinctive color and it’s level of sweetness.  Unlike Tawny Port, Ruby Port is meant to be consumed while it is still young, not having been as aged as it’s lighter and sweeter cousin.  Ruby Port is also oxidized as part Learn More

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A Contender for Best Fall Cocktail, or How to Make a Manhattan

October 8, 2013 Nick McAfee 1

Great cocktails often only include a couple of ingredients.  Many are also based solely on spirit, bitters, and the interplay of the sweet and the bitter.  A classic American pre-prohibition cocktail, the Manhattan, not only follows these subtle rules but is also the perfect fall cocktail. The Manhattan 2 parts rye whiskey (2oz) 1 part sweet vermouth (1 oz) 2 dashes angostura bitters (optional) garnish with a maraschino cherry or orange twirl To begin, set a cocktail glass aside with ice to chill.  Pour all ingredients with ice into a mixing glass and stir gently with a cocktail spoon.  The key to stirring a Manhattan is to thoroughly mix and chill the spirits without adding too much water or too many ice flakes to the cocktail.  Once stirred, dump the ice from the cocktail glass and strain in the spirits into the glass.  Garnish with a maraschino cherry and/or an orange Learn More

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How to Make the Rickety Cocktail, or a twist on DC’s official cocktail during the shutdown

October 1, 2013 Nick McAfee 0

Today, the US government decided to shutdown for the first time since 1996.  In honor (or is it more in mourning?) of this event and to give everyone who no longer has to go to work something to do, I have modified DC’s official drink, the Rickey, to better fit the mood of this day – bit bitter with a touch of rye humor over this surprising reality. The Rickety Cocktail aka the Shutdown Cocktail 2 oz rye whiskey 1/2 lime 2 dashes Angostura Bitters 2 dashes Grapefruit Bitters (optional) 4 oz club soda Pour the rye whiskey into a highball glass and squeeze the juice of half  a lime and drop the spent lime into the glass.  Add the bitters and stir gently.  Add several ice cubes and top off with club soda.  Serve with a straw. I did a bit of experimenting with which bitters would best compliment Learn More

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Technically Saturday: The Basics of Substituting Cocktail Ingredients

September 28, 2013 Nick McAfee 0

There are few things quite as frustrating as finding a great cocktail recipe only to realize that you don’t have all of the ingredients to make it.  Or that some of the ingredients are so expensive that you will never be able to justify stocking them in your bar.  Lucky for you, many cocktails will not suffer from some substitution if you don’t have an ingredient.  Like many aspects of mixology, experimenting is key after you know the basics. Basic Cocktail Ingredient Substitutions If you don’t have Cointreau, try: another orange liqueur triple sec curacao Grand Marnier Combier cherry liqueur pomegranate liqueur a floral liqueur such as St.-Germain Elderflower Liqueur a spicy liqueur such as Domaine de Canton Ginger Liqueur If you don’t have maraschino, try: other cherry liqueurs Cherry Moonshine triple sec a floral liqueur such as St.-Germain Elderflower Liqueur a spicy liqueur such as Domaine de Canton Ginger Learn More

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How to Make the Suburban, or Taking a Sledgehammer to Compromise

July 23, 2013 Nick McAfee 0

Sometimes I want to have all of my favorite things at once and am not in the mood to compromise. I love whiskey, rum, and port, but no drinks jumps to mind.  By delving back into the Rocco Era of cocktails, I found the perfect recipe: the Suburban. The Suburban 1 1/2 ounces rye whiskey 1/2 ounce dark rum 1/2 ounce port 1 dash orange bitters 1 dash Angostura bitters Stir all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. If you don’t have a rye handy, you can always substitute bourbon, but you will lose the tang from the rye that makes this cocktail even more unique. Good cheap ryes are hard to find. The best dollar value is probably Bulleit Straight Rye Whiskey, which costs $20-25/fifth. It may not be cheap, but if only used occasionally, it really makes cocktails like the Manhattan and Suburban unique Learn More