Sunday, June 20, 2021

Honshu Punch (Death & Co. Recipe)

Death & Co. keep a rotating Honshu punch for guests all year long. The recipe goes through variations depending on who is bartending, it seems. The settled-on recipe they put in the book involves Yamazaki 12-year-old whiskey. That all made sense back in 2008 when Japanese whiskey was still fabulous but inexpensive. Now it is just fabulous. 

This no-frills presentation is designed to keep your attention on the whiskey, which is a malted barley whiskey from Japan. That malt adds a tropical honey sweetness not unlike rum but with a more oat-like note. For this cocktail, I didn't use the expensive Japanese whiskey, opting for the slightly less expensive Catoctin Creek American Malt whiskey. This is a Virginia whiskey made from a Scottish wee heavy ale, so it has the malted barley component but no peat smoke. That makes it strikingly similar to Yamazaki single malt. 

  • 2 oz. Yamazaki 12-year-old whiskey (Catoctin Creek American Malt whiskey)
  • 3/4 oz. lemon juice
  • 1/2 oz. cane sugar syrup
  • 2 dashes Fee Brothers whiskey barrel-aged bitters (1 dash Angostura used)
  • 2 dashes Bitter Truth aromatic bitters (Hella aromatic used)
  • 1 oz. club soda

Combine all ingredients except soda in a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a chilled snifter full of two large chunks of ice. Top with club soda. 


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