What is Love? The creation of this cocktail was a part of a larger cocktail menu to celebrate Ray's brother's birthday. We were responsible for the cocktail program for the celebration. Very typical for me, it needed a cohesive theme. The focus was Bourbon, his favorite spirit, but the theme was "his life so far". The love of his life does not drink Bourbon... there needed to be a pivot in the menu to hallmark one of the biggest things to celebrate in his life so far; LOVE. In pouring over cocktail blogs I discovered the Brandy Old Fashioned on Jeff Morgenthaler's blog. This was the solution, an Old Fashioned, one of his favorite cocktails, less the bourbon, worked into an appropriate compilation of ingredients as a tribute to love. Bitter, sweet, sour, aromatic. Can you imagine a more romantic cocktail? Often the best love is not comprised of the ingredients you imagine you like best, but unexpected ones, that keep you wanting more.
1/2 oz Chai Spice Cherry Syrup + 2 Cherries
1 Orange wedge, Sour Orange if available
2 dashes Cardamom Bitters
2 oz Armagnac, you can sub Cognac or Brandy
In a chilled old fashioned glass, muddle Chai Spice Cherry Syrup, cherries, orange wedge and bitters into a thick paste. Focus the muddle on the orange flesh rather than the peel and pith.
Pour Armagnac into the glass and stir.
Fill cocktail glass with crushed ice.
Makes one cocktail