Featured Cocktail

Strawberry Rhubarb Daiquiri

We’ve moved on from winter – although it seems like we bypassed spring (typically a lovely season here in Washington, D.C.) and went right into summer! The good news is that fresh produce is now available at our local farm market. During the winter we tend to drink dark spirits (bourbon, rye, brandy, dark rum) and the only fruit in our cocktails is citrus or fruit brandy. When fresh fruit becomes available, we can’t wait to get out of our rut and freshen up our cocktails with something locally grown added to a light spirit (gin, vodka, tequila, light rum).
Last week we picked up local rhubarb and strawberries at the farm market and went right home and captured their fresh flavors in a home-made simple syrup. We put this to good use in margaritas and even a rye-based cocktail, but we think that the daiquiri fully captures the fresh sweet/tart flavor of the fruit. The bonus of making a fruit syrup is that you can add it to club soda for a fresh non-alcoholic drink (or pour it on your pan…

Yacht Club Cocktail

We’re thinking warm thoughts these days. Spring has been officially here for almost a month, but we’ve barely had any decent weather. Before we know it though, we’ll be be complaining about how hot it is! Of course, we would complain less if we were at the Yacht Club sipping a cocktail.
The mixologist member of the Cocktail Artist team was perusing one of our favorite cocktail books (The Waldorf Astoria Bar Book by Frank Caiafa) and came across the recipe for the Yacht Club cocktail. We had some surplus apricot liqueur after experimenting with it in the Coronation Cocktail, and the recipe sounded like a good way to put it to use. The Waldorf’s version of the Yacht Club uses white rum, apricot liqueur, sweet vermouth, and orange bitters. As usual, we changed things around a bit to create our own spin on the drink, but we did retain the slightly pink color by using True Grenadine in place of the sweet vermouth. We wanted a bit of sweet and tart flavor and real grenadine (made from pomegr…

Ultra Violet

Last month we made a trip to Philadelphia to see the Philadelphia Flower Show. Following our trip to the Flower Show last year we put it on our list of must-see annual events. You don’t need to be a gardener to appreciate the incredible displays, and it is sure to put you in a springtime mood - even if (like this year) winter refuses to go away. The colors and the scents provide both the mixologist and the artist with inspiration.
While in Philly, we dropped by the Art in the Age Tasting Room and picked up a couple bottles of their unique liqueurs. We’ve previously purchased Art in the Age releases in our local (D.C.) liquor store, but most of their new products are only available at the tasting room. So now, Art in the Age will be apermanent part of our Spring pilgrimage to Philadelphia. The tasting room stocks Art in the Age’s specialty liqueurs (produced in New Hampshire by Tamworth Distilling), spirits from Philadelphia’s New Liberty Distillery, and an extensive selection of bitter…

Cherry Amore

We just got a bottle of Don Ciccio & Figli’s newest release, Cerasum Aperitivo, and we are really enjoying working it into cocktails. This aperitivo comes from an Italian recipe that includes an infusion of cherries, sakura blossoms, roots and herbs. Don Ciccio & Figli is a craft distillery located here in Washington, DC (with roots in the Amalfi Coast), and Cerasum is their nod to DC’s Cherry Blossom Festival.
Since one member of the Cocktail Artist partnership has roots in Michigan, we were happy to learn that Michigan cherries were used to create this aperitivo. If you follow our blog you may have noticed that we spend time in Northern Michigan in the summer, and that we are big fans of Michigan’s Traverse City Whiskey Co. Take a look at our posts for the Cherry Capital Old Fashioned, the Grand Mariner, and the Up North Raspberryand Rye to see how we’ve used Traverse City Whiskey’s bourbon and rye (and to check out some of the Cocktail Artist’s watercolors done in his Northe…

Henry Hudson

It’s been busy here in Cocktail Artist HQ. Not only do we have a lot of new materials to work with in our home bar and our art studio but we’ve also added a new member to the Cocktail Artist family. Henry Hudson is our 3-month old Cavalier King Charles spaniel – and a bundle of energy. We named him after the English explorer, Henry Hudson, because right from the start this puppy showed us his curious and adventurous personality.
Once we got him to settle down we made a trip to the liquor store in search of inspiration for a new cocktail. We ended up getting a bottle of Tuthilltown Spirits Hudson Baby Bourbon – which seemed like a very obvious choice for a cocktail in honor of our new “baby”. The bourbon, which comes in a cute squat bottle, is made from 100% corn and aged in small (3 gallon) oak barrels. The distillery is up the Hudson River from New York City and uses local grains in the production of their spirits. Tuthilltown Spirits describes their Baby Bourbon as “mild and friendly…

Spiffed-up Floral Rickey

Spring hasn’t officially arrived here in Washington, DC, but we have had some intermittent spring-like weather over the past few weeks, and the cherry blossoms are already starting to come out. We took a quick trip to Philadelphia last weekend to see the annual Philadelphia Flower Show, and this threw us into full-throttle spring mode. We’re ready to spiff up our outdoor spaces, mix up a tall drink, and enjoy cocktail hour outside.
To get things started, we decided to freshen up a simple classic cocktail with some floral notes. A Rickey is a highball that originated here in the District of Columbia in 1883. This drink was born when a local bartender added a lime to Colonel Joe Rickey’s daily dose of bourbon and sparkling water, and it really became popular a decade later when the bourbon was replaced with gin. 
Traditionally, a Rickey doesn’t contain any sweeteners (so maybe our cocktail is more like a Tom Collins), but we’re going to call it a Rickey anyway. Our cocktail contains all …