Cocktail of the Day: Brandy Cobbler

I’ve been devouring Dale DeGroff’s book lately; it spent far too much time packed up in a box during the moving and unpacking ordeal. Besides helping me learn new things, it’s helping me learn old things too. For instance … cobblers! They were a class of drink unto themselves in the 19th Century, when “cocktail” meant one particular type of drink — whiskey or brandy, sugar, water and bitters. There were lots of types of drinks: daisy, flip, sangaree, smash, sling, etc. A cobbler (as served by Jerry Thomas in 1862) was some type of spirit or wine sweetened with sugar, shaken with seasonal fresh fruit, garnished with more fruit and served over ice. Dale has improved on the cobbler technique by muddling fresh fruit in the shaker with the drink ingredients, then decorating the drink with new, fresh fruit. The result is very, very refreshing.

You can make cobblers with just about anything: gin, whiskey, port, sherry, champagne, etc. Here’s the brandy version we had and enjoyed last night.

Brandy Cobbler

2 ounces brandy or Cognac (we use Hennessey V.S.O.P. for cocktails)
3/4 ounce raspberry syrup (such as Torani, Monin, etc.) or raspberry liqueur
2 wedges fresh pineapple (one without skin for muddling; one with skin for garnish)
2 wedges orange
2 wedges lemon
1 ounce water

Muddle the skinless pineapple wedge and one each orange and lemon wedges
in a shaker with the raspberry syrup or liqueur and the water, making sure you extract oil from the citrus peel as well as juice from the fruit. Add the brandy plus ice, then shake vigorously.

Strain into a large, double Old Fashioned glass filled with crushed or cracked
ice. Garnish the drink with the remaining orange and lemon wedges and the
pineapple wedge.