We are almost there. Those of us who have endured months of gray skies, erratic temperatures and unfriendly precipitation can perk up over the fact that we’re now midway through February—sometimes considered the most demeaning of months in the Northern Hemisphere. In the meantime, savoring some truly unexpected cocktails, responsibly, certainly helps to pass the time. The following six all come with a good story, too. And that makes them all the more relevant—and engaging. Whether it’s poured from a cement mixer turned cocktail shaker or artfully assembled in upstate New York, these recipes step outside of the ordinary to lend an extra kick against winter’s lingering grasp.
To celebrate their Chinese New Year Limited Edition Gift Box—featuring not one but two bottles of The Macallan Double Cask 12 Years Old and artwork honoring the Year of the Dog—the acclaimed Scotch brand released a series of cocktail recipes to enjoy the whisky with. Our personal favorite, the Whisked Away, brings in just enough Benedictine to lend addition gravity. It’s a delight, for sure, but so is the mentality behind the limited edition gift box: the receiver should enjoy one bottle on special occasions, and save the other as a collectible.
2 oz. The Macallan Double Cask 12 Years Old
.75 oz. Carpano Antica
.25 oz. Benedictine
2 dashes Angostura
Orange twist to garnish.
Developed by Tui Te Kaaho, the Beverage Director at Chinese Tuxedo, the Sichuan Tiger-Tail is a Michelada variation dedicated to the Lunar New Year—and it’s light enough to become a session drink but spicy enough to keep it all interesting. It all begins with one bottle of Tiger Beer. Everything else is about pizzaz and texture.
1 bottle Tiger Beer
.5 oz. lime juice
.5 oz. tomato sangrita or plain tomato juice
Tajin Classic Seasoning
1 dash Worcestershire sauce
1 dash Tamari sauce
2 dashes chili oil or valentina
Rim a Collins glass with Tajin Classic Seasoning. Once rimmed, place three ice cubes into Collins glass. Add Worcestershire sauce, Tamari sauce, chili oil, lime juice, and tomato sangrita. Top with Tiger Beer and serve.
Served up for streetwear designer Heron Preston‘s third collection—unveiled at the PUBLIC Hotel—Avion Tequila‘s Mango Margarita delivers exceptional freshness. It’s sweet, but substantial—and honestly, anyone can make this at home.
1.5 oz. Avión Silver
.75 oz. fresh lime juice
1 oz. mango purée
.5 oz. agave nectar
Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish with a lime wedge.
Mixed Up Monkey
There is a 2,400 Gallon Cocktail Shaker driving around the country right now. That shaker can hold roughly 123,000 bottles of Monkey Shoulder—the blended Scotch brand that imagined the 27-foot-long vehicle in the first place. To accompany the Monkey Mixer’s appearances, a cocktail will be served at all events. It was created by brand manager Seb Derbomez and it’s just as playful as the modified cement mixer concept. This, of course, can be batch made.
1.5 parts Monkey Shoulder
.75 parts mint simple syrup
.5 part fresh lemon juice
3 parts soda
Shake. Garnish with a fresh mint sprig.
Created by Meaghan Dorman, and a permanent addition to The Bennett Bar‘s menu, the Woolworth cocktail pays homage to the iconic skyscraper. The delicate, delectable cocktail debuted inside the model home of the Woolworth Tower Residences with Alchemy Properties’ president and founder, Ken Horn. Dorman is one of the most important names in cocktail making—with Dear Irving and Raines Law Room also under her charge. The Woolworth lives up to its might name, elegant and celebratory.
.5 oz. Jasmine syrup
.5 oz. Giffard peach liqueur
3 oz. dry prosecco or cava
1 oz. seltzer
Build in wine glass. Garnish with 3 lemon wheels.
Henning’s Local Oslo Mule
In the western Catskills, Norwegian chef Henning Nordanger has built a comfort food reprieve unlike any other at Henning’s Local. A charmed environment plays host to delicious fare, with an emphasis on locally-grown ingredients. On the cocktail menu, the Olso Mule offers more than a variation on a standard. Designed by Josiah Early, the drink replaces vodka with caraway and star anise-flavored Linie Aquavit (a Norwegian delight) but also sports homemade juniper syrup. The latter bolsters ginger syrups impact, making something botanical and beautiful on the tongue.
2 oz. Linie Aquavit
.75 oz. juniper syrup
.5 oz. ginger syrup
.5 oz. fresh lime juice
Top with soda
Stir. Garnish with Lime Wheel with Candied Ginger.
Mango Margarita image by David Prutting with BFA, all other images courtesy of respective brands