Cocktail of the day: Clover Club

This one’s another old classic that I’d never thought to try until relatively recently. My becoming a born-again gin drinker has helped, along with my fascination with cocktails that contain eggs. The final push was having it pointed out to Wes and me by Michael and Arturo, the two bartenders-from-Heaven at the Petrossian Bar, who like cocktails from 75-100 years ago as we do.

I’ve started using a pasteurized egg white product from the refrigerated section of the supermarket instead of fresh egg white, and it works just as well, plus no worries of pesky salmonella. You can’t get pasteurized yolks, so if I’m going to be making any flips or golden fizzes we’ll just have to take the leap. The “classic” recipe calls for grenadine, but this ingredient is so ubiquitous (and usually such poor quality, mostly artificially-flavored) that I took a cue from the Bellagio bartenders and used raspberry syrup instead. This drink is a deep pink with a thick frothy head, and is delicious.

Clover Club

1-1/2 ounces gin.
3/4 ounce fresh-squeezed lemon juice.
2 teaspoons raspberry syrup.
1 egg white.

Place all ingredients into a tall cocktail shaker with lots of ice and shake vigorously for about 30 seconds. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. This one’s pretty enough not to require a garnish.

UPDATE: Clover Club correction! Almost had some nice alliteration going there … kinda did anyway, but no “cl” sound to start the third word. Anyway, I digress.

In flipping through Stanley Clisby Arthur I saw his recipe for the Clover Club, which I like much better than the old traditional one. It’s almost exactly the same, but with a New Orleans touch that I love. Here’s his version with some of his comments excerpted.

Clover Club
(New Orleans version)

1-1/2 ounces dry gin.
Juice of 1/2 lime.
1 pony (1 ounce) raspberry syrup.
1 egg white.
1 dash Peychaud’s bitters.

Pour the ingredients into the shaker over ice in order given. Set yourself for a good shaking, for this is a cocktail that must be well frappéd. To give chic to the final result, decorate your cocktail glasses with sprigs of mint after straining into them the delightful liquid from your shaker.

We have always admired the added ummph the dash of Peychaud bitters gives this deservedly popular concoction.

So have I, Mr. Arthur, so have I.

A whole ounce of raspberry syrup’s a bit much for me, so I’d recommend the former recipe, but with the addition of that dash of Peychaud’s. The magic of bitters is not to be discounted.