Dazed and confused? Not me. I’m just Lost in the Cheese Aisle.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

COCKTAIL DU JOUR

Yellowtail
The Yellowtail. Not to be confused with the fish of the same name; there’s nothing fishy about this drink.

When I was in Philadelphia several weeks ago, I stopped in at The Mildred, a new restaurant that, in addition to a fine American menu, features a bar with a fine repertoire of classic cocktails.

As soon as I saw the real maraschino cherry in my Old Fashioned  - not one of those radioactive Red Dye #2-infused horrors - I knew I was in the right place.

The mixologist, one Dominic by name, not only made an excellent Old Fashioned, but also a superb Sazerac, seasoning the glass with heinously powerful Abyss absinthe.  And he also made me one of these bittersweet beauties:

The Yellowtail

1¾ oz rye whiskey
½ - ¾ oz Averna
½ oz Luxardo maraschino
2 dashes Angostura bitters

Stir in cocktail shaker with ice. Strain into cocktail glass and garnish with a lemon twist.

The ingredient that distinguishes this baby from its cousins is the Averna, one of a class of bittersweet Italian herbal concoctions known as amari (singular: amaro).  It’s a medium amaro, not quite as bitter as fernet, but with a lot more punch than its juvenile German cousin J├Ągermeister.  A shot of Averna is a perfect digestif after a big meal... better than Bromo-Seltzer any day. 

Like any cocktail in which bitters are not merely a bit player, this is not anything like those kiddie faux-Martinis that have recently overpopulated the Tipple-Circuit.  If your taste runs to appletinis and Cosmopolitans, perhaps you’d better look elsewhere - this drink will scrape the fuzz off a Fuzzy Navel and set fire to it.

When I think “yellowtail,” I’m usually ordering sushi.  But I have a suspicion that I will be ordering a few more of these bad boys down the road.

2 comments:

El Capitan said...

I'm glad you mentioned that drink included lemon peel.

For a second there, I thought there was a Cheetoh floating in your cocktail...

Elisson said...

I see how you might think that's a Chee-to, Cappy... which makes me think that there must be a drink out there for which a Chee-to would be an appropriate garnish. Perhaps a Filthy Dirty Martini?