Shaken or Stirred?

Cocktails with local flair

Back Article Dec 5, 2014 By Shannon Haslinger

Bartenders around the region have provided us with their best bets for holiday cocktails featuring gin, rye and bourbon — spirits that are now being produced locally by craft distillers.

Stephanie Hoppe, bartender at Pianeta, recommends a New York Sour, a “warming cocktail that’s a blend of bourbon and red wine with a burst of citrus flavor.”

New York Sour

  • 1 ounce bourbon (she recommends Makers Mark)
  • 1/2 a lemon, squeezed
  • 1/2 ounce simple syrup

Shake with ice and pour in a rocks glass. Finish with a fruity red wine float. Place a spoon over the shaken cocktail and pour the wine just enough to cover the back of the spoon. Hoppe recommends Malbec or an Italian red wine.

Teresa Loughner, bar manager at Hawk’s restaurant in Granite Bay, suggests a “fabulous cool-weather cocktail that’s filled with warming spices and reminiscent of spending time with family and friends during the holidays.”

Fall in New York

  • 1  1/2 ounce rye
  • 3/4 ounce spiced simple syrup
  • 3/4 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 3 dashes angostura bitters

Stir and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.

To make your own spiced simple syrup, Loughner recommends:

  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 10 black pepper corns
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups water

In a saucepan, bring ingredients to a slow boil. Once it has started to boil, remove from heat and let sit for 30 minutes. Strain and store.

From bartender Paul Dejonge at Stockton’s Ave on the Mile, a classic Singapore Sling. It’s “a little bit different, fun to make and tastes really good.”

Singapore Sling

  • Grenadine
  • 1 ounce gin
  • Sweet and sour mix
  • Club soda
  • 1/2 ounce cherry brandy

Coat the bottom of a glass with grenadine and then fill to the top with ice. Pour in 1 ounce of gin with equal parts sweet and sour mix and club soda. Finish with the cherry brandy.

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