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Cocktails of Desperation


TAPrice
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Let me tell you about my life. I've got a five week old who doesn't sleep. A 2 year old who never stops moving. And somewhere in all that, I've got work. Do I need a drink? You bet I do.

In my current situation, I'm not up for anything too complicated. Basically, I've been making a lot of Old Fashioneds, Negronis, corn and oils. But that's getting a little old and I need some variations.

Having given this a lot of thought in my infinite free time, these are the criteria for what I can make:

1) Build in the glass over ice: No shaking, no stirring. I'm not interesting in cleaning a mixing tin. Our sink is already full of breast pumping equipment.

2) Equal proportions are nice: Math has never been harder. At the very least, I need a simple ratio. That also allows me to easily double my drinks, which I often do.

3) No citrus: Juicing a lemon or lime? Ain't gonna happen. Hell, remembering to buy lemons or limes at the store isn't going to happen.

Suggestions?

Todd A. Price aka "TAPrice"

Homepage and writings; A Frolic of My Own (personal blog)

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There are lots of things you can do with what you already have in your repertoire.

For example, the Negroni formula is good for lots of variations. Get yourself some Smith & Cross and sub that in for the gin and you have a Kingston Negroni (credit to Joaquin Simo). Of sub in some Bols Genever for the gin. You an also replace all or some of the Campari with Aperol or Cynar. Use a blanco vermouth instead of sweet vermouth. Add a touch of eau de vie to dry it out. This is how you can start with one drink and riff your way into something completely different. For example: equal parts Bols Genever, Dolin Blanc and Aperol with a touch of kirschwasser and a few dashes of bitters.

A lot of it is also formulas. One almost-never-misses formula I got from Dave Wondrich is 2 ounces spirit, 1 ounce fortified or aromatized wine (everything from vermouth to quinquina to sherry and madiera and more), 1 teaspoon liqueur, 1 dash bitters. So long as you don't pick outlandish constituents, this will almost always result in a nice-tasting cocktail, and occasionally something sublime like the Weeski.

50/50 cocktails with one spirit and one "fortified/aromatized wine or similar proof/sweetness constituent" are also often really nice, although I find them to frequently be fairly brand-specific when they are at their best. Two of my "inventions" that get a lot of play around here are 50% Laird's bonded applejack with 50% Mirto di Sardegna, and 50% Smith & Cross with 50% Bonal Gentiane-Quina. These are usually stirred/strained, but could be built and lengthened with soda water.

Also, if you're into built drinks, what about highballs? The possibilities are nearly endless.

--

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My first thought would be a Manhattan (with the Brandy Manhattan as a variation).

Along the vein of Negroni variations as proposed by Sam, you could try subbing a Reposado tequila for the gin. Very different drink and one you may like a lot (or maybe not like, but it's worth a shot).

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Also, if you're into built drinks, what about highballs? The possibilities are nearly endless.

Just so you don't get the wrong idea about the kind of man I am, I'm not really into built drinks. It's just all I can manage these days.

Those are great suggestions, Sam.

Todd A. Price aka "TAPrice"

Homepage and writings; A Frolic of My Own (personal blog)

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Scotch on the rocks or just rye, neat. Martinis and muddled drinks were invented after God invented the playdate where both parents stay; that way there's always one person to mess with the drinks and one to keep the kids away from the computer cables.

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Milk Punch? :raz:

Dark & Stormy; Campari & soda; rum & orange juice (nice with a sink of grenadine, and at least gets you the vitamin C you must be needing).

I think most stirred drinks can be built without doing too much harm.

Congratulations on the contributions to the gene pool.

It's almost never bad to feed someone.

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