Thursday, January 28, 2021

Crazy Crossing


This beauty of a cocktail is intentionally French. It calls for Dubonnet rouge, which is an aromatized wine from Paris, but having none, I intentionally went with another French aromatized wine that fits the bill--Byrrh.

I've mixed with Byrrh before and found it a little softer than Dubonnet, and a little less fruity. All the fuss about it being made with many kinds of quinine botanicals seems overplayed. Byrrh is mild and floral and adds a lovely rouge color as well.

This is the first time I've mixed with Citadelle gin from France, and I have to say it has such a fresh botanical scent and flavor. Eighteen botanicals puts it in league with the Botonist from Scotland or Glendalough gin from Ireland, and it has that same kind of freshness I associate with the UK gins. I don't know if Citadelle is unfiltered, but I would assume that its brightness comes from not filtering away the brightest juniper and citrus notes.

The cocktail? This is a very French version of a Martinez. An impressive gin and several kinds of sweet and dry vermouth as well as Mandarine Napoleon to give it rich cognac and spiced mandarin orange notes instead of using orange bitters. In fact, it is a Martinez down to the maraschino liqueur, which I love.

  • 1 1/2 oz. gin (Citadelle used)
  • 3/4 oz. Dubonnet rouge (Byrrh used)
  • 3/4 oz. dry vermouth (Dolin used)
  • 1/3 oz. maraschino liqueur (Luxardo used)
  • 1/12 Mandarine Napoleon (homemade used)
  • maraschino cherry (Bada Bing used)

Combine liquid ingredients in a mixing glass with ice. Stir and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a speared cherry. 

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