Provençale Cocktail

I stumbled across a few recipes on the Chowhound site for a specialty cocktail created by the guys at Employees Only in New York, one of the top cocktail spots in the city. The recipes centered around a cocktail consisting of gin, dry vermouth and Cointreau — sounds simple, and very similar to a couple dozen cocktails in the database, but the similarity ends there when the gin is infused with lavender and the vermouth with herbes de Provence.

(Employees Only, NYC)

2-1/2 ounces lavender-infused Plymouth gin.
2-1/2 ounces Vermouth de Provence.
1 ounce Cointreau.

Combine with ice in a mixing glass and stir for 30 seconds. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with an orange twist.

YIELD: 2 drinks.

To make lavender-infused gin, add 1-1/2 teaspoons dried lavender to one 750ml bottle of Plymouth Gin. Infuse for 24 hours, then strain and rebottle.

To make Vermouth de Provence, start with 2-1/4 teaspoons of herbes de Provence and one 750ml bottle of Noilly Prat Original Dry vermouth. Add the herbs to 3/4 cup of the vermouth and bring to a simmer (not a boil!) over low-medium heat. Simmer for 5 minutes, remove from heat, allow to cool for 15 minutes, then strain. Pour the infusion back into the bottle with the rest of the vermouth.

Sure, make two. Who wants to drink alone?

These guys play with infusions a lot and savory flavors in cocktails. It fascinates me, and I’ll definitely be visiting when I finally get my butt to New York.