Cocktail of the Week: Penicillin

Penicillin

A friend recently made the comment that most of the cocktails I make seem to be sweet. Looking over my recent posts that is most certainly true! But it wasn’t by design and now that it has been pointed out to me I’ll be sure to mix it up (get it?) a little more here starting with this week’s cocktail, Penicillin. This cocktail was created by New York bartender Sam Ross in 2005 in an effort to dilute the taboo against using single malts in mixed drinks. What he came up with is a delicious blend of the bright, warm tastes of lemon, honey, and ginger with the peaty smokiness of an Islay Scotch. Think of a cool hot toddy and you’re almost there.

Penicillin
The ingredients

Penicillin

  • 2 oz. blended Scotch whisky
  • 3/4 oz. fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 oz. honey syrup
  • 3 slices of fresh ginger
  • 1/4 oz. Islay single malt Scotch

Muddle the ginger slices in shaker until well mashed. Add blended Scotch, lemon juice, and honey syrup to shaker. Fill shaker with ice. Shake until well chilled. Strain into an ice filled rocks glass. Float the Islay Scotch over the drink by pouring it over the back of a bar spoon onto the drink.

Penicillin

Wow, I was not expecting this! In fact, I was near certain this cocktail would be terrible due to the almost overpowering peaty smokiness of the Laphroaig. I couldn’t have been more wrong. The Penicillin is refreshing, smooth, with this wonderfully subtle woody smokiness that plays about the nose. Sorry, Moscow Mule but you may have just been replaced!

Cocktail of the Week: Peach, Ginger, and Bourbon Frozen Cocktail


2014-07-06 18.58.09

Fourth of July weekend was a scorcher! We decided to ditch the central valley and head someplace cooler: Santa Cruz. Where, I might add, we had a great time relaxing, enjoying the beach, running trails, watching the illegal fireworks, etc., etc. It was great! To cap it all off we picked up some fresh fruit and ginger and whipped up this frozen cocktail. I was a little leery about mixing peaches and ginger at first, but…

The ingredients, sans ginger
The ingredients, sans ginger

Peach, Ginger, and Bourbon Frozen Cocktail

  • 3/4 cup frozen peaches
  • 1/2 tbsp. finely grated peeled ginger
  • 2 oz. bourbon
  • 1 oz. simple syrup
  • 1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup ice

Place all ingredients into a blender and pulse. Stop when the texture looks too thick when poured into a Collins glass. Garnish with rosemary sprig if desired.

2014-07-06 18.58.36

I’m glad I took the plunge and made this! Ginger and Peach work great together, the garnish complements the drink nicely as well. I’m thinking next time I make it I’ll squeeze some rosemary oil into the drink. Cool, crisp, clean. This was the perfect way to cool down after a hot 4th of July weekend.