Cocktail of the Day: The Saratoga

Sorry, I know I haven’t done this in a while. Out of town, busy with all kindsa stuff and posting New Orleans food porn (and yeah, I know, it’s been three weeks and I’m only just gettin’ started). Let’s have a drink.

This one hails from Saratoga Springs, New York in the 1880s. According to David Wondrich’s Imbibe!, there were two cocktails by this name, one being basically “a Fancy Brandy Cocktail with a squirt of Champagne,” the other being this, similar to a Manhattan in which half the rye has been switched out. It’s mighty tasty.

Oh, and when we made it the rye was Rittenhouse Bonded, the brandy was Hennessy VSOP, the vermouth was Carpano Antica.

The Saratoga Cocktail

1 ounce rye whiskey.
1 ounce brandy.
1 ounce sweet vermouth.
2 dashes Angostura Bitters.

Combine with ice in a mixing glass and stir for no less than 30 seconds. Strain into a cocktail glass or, as the book suggests, “a thin stemmed glass with a curved lip.” Garnish with a quarter slice of lemon, either perched on the rim or floated in the drink.

“Replace the vermouth with absinthe,” Dave says, “and you have what the Hoffman House called a ‘Morning Cocktail.’ If that’s what you need to get going in the A.M., God help you.”