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The Aviation


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#31 Lan4Dawg

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Posted 27 May 2004 - 08:38 PM

I was flipping through a book w/ "martini" receipts yesterday and found a cocktail called, "The Allen Cocktail". The receipt calls for:
4 parts gin
1 part maraschino liqueur
1/2 tsp fresh lemon
lemon twist
combine liquid ingredients in cocktail shaker w/ cracked ice and shake well. Strain into cocktail glass and garnish w/ lemon twist.

I did a quick double take wondering why that receipt looked familiar then it dawned on me, that is very similar to the aviation cocktail we had discussed in another thread (&, inspired by the thread had mixed and enjoyed several times). The major difference seems to be in the amount of maraschino and lemon juice. Any information on "the Allen Cocktail"? I had never heard of it before but did find it mentioned in a some other cocktail books. Interestingly enough all of the receipts are different fr/ each other.
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#32 Dan Ryan

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Posted 28 May 2004 - 05:20 AM

Is it not a bit sweet?

#33 slkinsey

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Posted 28 May 2004 - 06:49 AM

"The Allen Cocktail". The receipt calls for:
4 parts gin (i.e., 2.0 oz)
1 part maraschino liqueur (i.e., 0.5 oz)
1/2 tsp fresh lemon (i.e., 0.1 oz)
lemon twist
colored text is editorial

This recipe isn't all that different from my Aviation recipe:

2.0 oz : gin
0.5 oz : fresh lemon juice
0.5 oz : maraschino
Lemon twist

The main difference is that the Allen Cocktail uses substantially less lemon juice. Other than that, they are identical. I would tend to agree with Dan that these ratios don't sound as good to me. The drink would be too sweet and wouldn't have the refreshing sourness of an Aviation.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#34 Lan4Dawg

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Posted 28 May 2004 - 10:19 AM

I did make a couple just to sample and they are much sweeter than an aviation as both of you mentioned.
I did find a couple of more receipts for The Allen Cocktail and they called for 2 parts gin to 1 part maraschino w/a dash of lemon juice. Quite frankly I preferred the first receipt w/ more gin and I wound up adding a touch more lemon juice b/c of the sweetness. The cocktail wound up being a happy medium between the two drinks--not as sweet as the Allen but not as sour as the Aviation. Perhaps my tastes run to a combination of the two--an "alienation"?
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#35 JAZ

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Posted 30 May 2004 - 09:03 AM

I looked in my copy of Mr. Boston and found the Allen (but not the Aviation, interestingly). None of my other cocktail books mention it at all; they all have the Aviation listed.

Mr. B's recipe is 1.5 oz. gin, .75 oz of Maraschino, and .25 oz. lemon juice, which sounds like the 2 to 1 ratio you mention.

#36 Blondie

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Posted 30 June 2004 - 06:52 PM

WD-50 makes a more than passable aviation.

They certainly do. I had one a few days ago.

Bleachboy was on the right track as they do use simple syrup in theirs, and it far surpassed any that I've made without it.
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#37 bleachboy

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Posted 01 July 2004 - 06:59 AM

Just got back from Las Vegas and I can report that Craftsteak and the bar next to "La Femme" at the MGM Grand both stock Luxardo and both will make you a very good Aviation if you tell them how.
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#38 slkinsey

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Posted 24 February 2005 - 12:17 PM

Gary Regan's column in the SF Chron today talks about guess what? The Aviation.

The Aviation Cocktail, which dates to the 1930s, is a simple drink calling for gin, maraschino liqueur and fresh lemon juice -- but it's the maraschino that makes this cocktail stand tall. Many people who haven't tasted maraschino liqueur assume it's overly sweet, like maraschino cherries, but good maraschino liqueur -- available under the Luxardo and Stock brand names -- is far drier than the name might lead you to believe.

Made from Dalmatian Marasca cherries, pits included, maraschino adds a little sweetness and a wonderfully dry, peppery nuttiness to cocktails. There's a hint of cherries in the flavor profile, too.

The recipe he gives is the same as in his book, and it's the one I prefer:

2.0 oz : gin
0.5 oz : fresh lemon juice
0.5 oz : maraschino liqueur

Shake with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass (I like mine with the addition of a lemon twist garnish).


Gary's recipe actually bumps up the amount of maraschino from the more historical formulae, such as this one from cocktailDB which calls for 2 oz gin, 1 oz lemon juice and only two dashes of maraschino. This sounds like an excessively sour drink to me.

No mention in the article of the creme de violette history Dave mentions above (which sounds so cool and makes so much sense I have to find some creme de violette).
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#39 ludja

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Posted 24 February 2005 - 01:20 PM

I've only had one Aviation at a bar but would like to make them at home. I tracked down some Luxardo.

For you Aviation fans out there that have already done some experimenting, what is your favorite brand gin to use in the drink?
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#40 slkinsey

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Posted 24 February 2005 - 01:48 PM

For you Aviation fans out there that have already done some experimenting, what is your favorite brand gin to use in the drink?

Tanqueray is very good, but I have a fondness for good old Gordon's gin. It's got a nicely emphatic piney-ness that I like in drinks like the Aviation.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#41 bacchant036

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Posted 01 March 2005 - 06:21 AM

absolutely loving them with miclo violet liqueur,
we have it this way on out list at work and it goes down a treat,
put substantially less maraschino in though and a dash of some gomme.
find the violet often gets lost in the lemon and gin so use about 15mls.

i love this drink
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#42 LindyCat

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Posted 01 March 2005 - 02:14 PM

We served Aviations at our last party after I read about them here, and they were a big hit. I loved watching suspicious friends' (gin and what?) eyes light up when they took the first sip. A former bartender had never encountered one, and took a minute to complain about the "-tini" phenomenon while she made herself and husband more Aviations.

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#43 kvltrede

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Posted 01 April 2005 - 05:03 PM

...For you Aviation fans out there that have already done some experimenting, what is your favorite brand gin to use in the drink?...

I've made Aviations with Beefeater, Gordon's, Gilbey's and Broker's. I think that Broker's Gin is easily my favorite gin for this drink with Beefeater a solid second. I think it's the prominence of the citrus notes in the Broker's that I like.

The Gordon's and Gilbey's-based Aviations were quite drinkable but not memorable. I mixed up the Broker's Aviation a few weeks ago after my Broker's Martini was a modest but drinkable failure (2.5 : .5, IIRC). The Aviation was so good that it was the only cocktail shaken the following weekend. With Broker's it's one of my favorites, maybe a notch or two below the Pegu Club but roughly equal to a Calvados Sidecar.

I use David Wondrich's measurements:
2 oz London dry gin
1/3 oz (2 tsp) maraschino liqueur
3/4 oz fresh lemon juice (strained, if possible)

David prefers his ungarnished but I usually forget that until after I've already dropped in a cherry. A lemon twist would be especially welcome, I think, if one prefers the Aviation recipes that call for less lemon juice. I use Luxardo Maraschino because that's what I've got. I haven't tried Maraska yet.

If anyone has made a wholly successful Martini with Broker's I'd be very interested in your ratio. I may just stick with Plymouth as my Martini gin but I'm willing to take another shot or two with Broker's now that the price of Plymouth has gone up in Chicago.

Kurt
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#44 slkinsey

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Posted 02 April 2005 - 12:37 PM

I use David Wondrich's measurements:
2 oz London dry gin 
1/3 oz (2 tsp) maraschino liqueur
3/4 oz fresh lemon juice

Interesting. I'm looking at Dave's Esquire Drinks and see 2 oz gin, 1/2 oz lemon juice and 1 tsp maraschino.

The whole Aviation question is an interesting one for me. I recently had a fun conversation about it with Marco Dionysos, who was in town from SF for a few days. If you look at the older recipes, there doesn't seem to be a "balanced" recipe for a gin/lemon juice/maraschino cocktail (by balanced, I mean with approximately equal parts of sweet and sour). In the Savoy Cocktail Book, for example, there is the Aviation with 2 oz dry gin (2/3) 1 oz lemon juice (1/3) and 2 dashes maraschino and there is the Allen with 2 oz Plymouth gin (2/3) 1 oz maraschino (1/3) and 1 dash lemon juice. I can't find anything with, say, 2 ounces of gin and a half ounce each of lemon juice and maraschino. To my taste, the Savoy Aviation is fundamentally a sour drink whereas the Savoy Allen is fundamentally a sweet drink.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#45 kvltrede

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Posted 05 April 2005 - 11:41 AM

I use David Wondrich's measurements:
2 oz London dry gin 
1/3 oz (2 tsp) maraschino liqueur
3/4 oz fresh lemon juice

Interesting. I'm looking at Dave's Esquire Drinks and see 2 oz gin, 1/2 oz lemon juice and 1 tsp maraschino....

Hmmm. I have Daves' book but I guess I'm using the slightly different recipe from the Esquire website. I've also cut-and-pasted Gary Regan's and Dale DeGroff's recipes into a half-assed database of sorts but I haven't gotten past Dave's cyberrecipe since I made it with Brokers.

Kurt
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The Handy Snake

#46 Splificator

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Posted 05 April 2005 - 12:37 PM

I use David Wondrich's measurements:
2 oz London dry gin 
1/3 oz (2 tsp) maraschino liqueur
3/4 oz fresh lemon juice

Interesting. I'm looking at Dave's Esquire Drinks and see 2 oz gin, 1/2 oz lemon juice and 1 tsp maraschino....

Hmmm. I have Daves' book but I guess I'm using the slightly different recipe from the Esquire website.



Perhaps I should explain. I wrote Esquire Drinks in 2000 and 2001, based in part on the drink-of-the-week columns I'd been doing for esquire.com, but with a goodly number of additional drinks. When the book was finished, the column lived on for another three years or so, during which time I revisited a number of drinks that I felt had been shortchanged in the book (particularly in the essay department) and added scads that had never made it into the book in the first place, chiefly because I had never heard of them.

While revisiting the drinks that were in the book (this is getting awfully confusing), I took the opportunity to test them again. And again. That's why the online Aviation recipe is different from the one in Esquire Drinks. And, probably, better. We learn by doing (there are notable exceptions).

I should add, just to add to the confusion, that I've collected a number of these newer or revised recipes (but alas not their accompanying essays) in my new book, Killer Cocktails: An Intoxicating Guide to Sophisticated Drinking,* due from HarperCollins on May 1st. It also contains a few recipes of my own and quite a few more that were freshly exhumed from the archives just for the book.

All clear? I thought so.

In any case, I'm delighted that in one form or another the recipe pleases. Certainly one of my favorites.

--DW

*No, that's not my title. I wanted to call it How To Make Drinks and Intoxicate People, but the legal department though different.
aka David Wondrich

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#47 kvltrede

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Posted 05 April 2005 - 04:33 PM

...I should add, just to add to the confusion, that I've collected a number of these newer or revised recipes (but alas not their accompanying essays) in my new book, Killer Cocktails: An Intoxicating Guide to Sophisticated Drinking,* due from HarperCollins on May 1st. It also contains a few recipes of my own and quite a few more that were freshly exhumed from the archives just for the book....
--DW

*No, that's not my title. I wanted to call it How To Make Drinks and Intoxicate People, but the legal department though different.

A new book! Fantastic!

Too bad about the title. Your original title was infinitely better and damned clever to boot. No matter, though, I'm looking forward to it. Congrats on the imminent publication!

Kurt
“I like to keep a bottle of stimulant handy in case I see a snake--which I also keep handy.” ~W.C. Fields
The Handy Snake

#48 LindyCat

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Posted 06 April 2005 - 05:12 PM

absolutely loving them with miclo violet liqueur,
we have it this way on out list at work and it goes down a treat,
put substantially less maraschino in though and a dash of some gomme.
find the violet often gets lost in the lemon and gin so use about 15mls.

i love this drink

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Where can one find violette? In Chicago, one hopes? If not, would parfait amour (which seems more esoteric to me, but is stocked by Sam's--go figure) be an acceptable substitute? I haven't tried either.

#49 Splificator

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Posted 11 April 2005 - 09:23 AM

A new book!  Fantastic!

Too bad about the title.  Your original title was infinitely better and damned clever to boot.  No matter, though, I'm looking forward to it.  Congrats on the imminent publication!

Kurt

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Hey, thanks! It's a small book, but I'm pretty excited about it. I'll just have to use the original title for something else. Something...dangerous.

--DW
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There are, according to recent statistics, 147 female bartenders in the United States. In the United Kingdom the barmaid is a feature of the wayside inn, and is a young woman of intelligence and rare sagacity. --The Syracuse Standard, 1895

#50 Heikki

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Posted 17 April 2005 - 03:13 AM

This Easter, three weeks ago, I served Aviations to seven people with ages varying from 19 to 75. In other words, it was interesting to see if I could come up with a recipe that pleases the whole age and taste spectrum. The recipe I used was this:

6 cl (2 oz) gin (Plymouth gin)
2 cl (2/3 oz) Maraschino
3 cl (1 oz) lemon juice (normal, not very sour)

This was shaken as one amount and then strained into two small cocktail glasses. For garnish I used cocktail cherries that were first rinsed under running water to keep them making the cocktail finish too sweet. I also snapped a small lemon twist on top of the drink but did not add the twist into the drink.

The drink was very well received and described as refreshing, not too sweet and simply just "good". I also think that 6/2/3 works well unless you want to highlight any of the components. With 6/2/3 you can tell it is alcoholic and gin based, 2 of marschino does not come through overpowering while it mixes well with lemon to keep the whole drink not becoming too sour.

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Heikki Vatiainen

#51 gethin

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Posted 17 April 2005 - 02:03 PM

While you're at it, you might ask him if he's snagged any creme de violette: according to Hugo Ensslin's 1916 Recipes for Mixed Drinks, which has the earliest formula for the drink I've been able to find, that went into the Aviation along with the maraschino, lemon juice and gin (I use a teaspoon of each liqueur, half an ounce of strained lemon juice and two ounces of gin). It gives the drink a pale, skyish blue color--which explains its name.



Ted Haigh refers to a cocktail called a Blue Moon -

"A Blue Moon is exactly the same as an Aviation except that the former calls for Creme Yvette , thirty years gone, and the latter uses maraschino liqueur. ........ Creme Yvette was a proprietary violet liqueur compounded from violet petals and other secret flavourings"[ Ted Haigh : Vintage Cocktails and Spitits

I'm off to Albi (centre of French violet growing) next week so look forward to getting a bottle of creme de violette and comparing the straight violet version , the straight maraschino version and your version with both.


gethin

#52 winesonoma

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Posted 28 July 2005 - 02:55 PM

Can Luxardo be used to make a proper Aviation?
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#53 slkinsey

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Posted 28 July 2005 - 03:16 PM

Bruce, not only can Luxardo maraschino be used to make an Aviation, many would argue (and I among them) that Luxardo is the best maraschino and therefore makes the best Aviation.
Samuel Lloyd Kinsey

#54 winesonoma

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Posted 28 July 2005 - 03:55 PM

Gonna have to make one then because that's all I could get. What's your favorite Gin for one?
Bruce Frigard
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#55 lancastermike

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Posted 29 July 2005 - 05:35 AM

Gonna have to make one then because that's all I could get. What's your favorite Gin for one?

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I have been using Gordon's with good results. Luxardo works great for me and this is a wonderful cocktail

#56 birder53

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Posted 29 July 2005 - 06:47 AM

Gonna have to make one then because that's all I could get. What's your favorite Gin for one?

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I'm partial to Plymouth.
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#57 mbanu

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Posted 29 July 2005 - 07:20 AM

Did anyone else notice that if you added soda water to an Aviation, you ended up with a drink surprisingly similar to a Singapore Sling?? :blink:

#58 redfox

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Posted 29 July 2005 - 04:43 PM

I've finally managed to obtain a bottle of maraschino (Stock) and have made my first Aviatons, using the 4/1/1 proportions advocated by slkinsey. Tanqueray gin. I wonder how it would be with Plymouth. Too fruity? Garnish is a homemade maraschino cherry following those NY Times instructions featuring frozen organic cherries and maraschino liqueur.

I too find that there is an excellent merging of flavors such that it would be difficult to pick ingredients out -- though I don't think I'd go so far as to say that it's not recognizably a gin drink. Anyway, it's really delicious.
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#59 winesonoma

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Posted 30 July 2005 - 09:50 AM

Made them last night. Wonderful way to start the weekend.
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#60 The Hersch

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Posted 02 August 2005 - 08:52 AM

I was in the mood for an Aviation cocktail yesterday evening, but realized I had no lemons in the house. Plenty of limes, though, so I decided to substitute. Then, since I was already being untraditional, I figured what the heck, and added a dash of Peychaud's Bitters. It was a very good cocktail, although no longer an Aviation. The fact that it looked like a Cosmopolitan left me with mixed feelings. But I shall certainly make it again.