Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Algonquin Cocktail

Looking for something a bit different to drink last night, I came across the Algonquin Cocktail in one of my favorite cocktail books - Dr. Cocktail's (aka Ted Haigh) Vintage Spirits & Forgotten Cocktails. Back in the 1930s, New York City's Algonquin Hotel hosted any number of "renowned literati of the time," where the group became known as the Round Table, though according to the good Dr., they probably didn't drink the eponymous cocktail...it evidently came into being a good number of years later.

Now, being a slightly obsessed person (shhhh), and just because I like to, I pulled out a number of cocktail books, to check and see what they might tout as "the" recipes. Both Gary Regan and David Wondrich had essentially the same ingredients in the same proportions, but then Dale DeGroff, in his masterpiece The Craft of the Cocktail, had something totally different - and rather weird sounding, containing rum, blackberry brandy, Benedictine and fresh lime juice. Though Mr. DeGroff does write that he served it with great success, for many years at the Rainbow Room, that version didn't sound like the one I wanted to drink, so we went with the majority - democracy rules, after all (well, except in the U.S. Senate, but that's another story).

Back to the Algonquin - a nice, dry, easy drinking cocktail, with a ratio of 2 parts rye, 1 part dry vermouth and 1 part pineapple juice. Shaken or stirred, and you can't go wrong...

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