1 1/2 oz Aquavit 3/4 oz Amontillado Sherry
3/4 oz Dry Vermouth
Stir with ice, strain into chilled a cocktail glass
For Mixology Monday this month, Nick from the Booze Baron decreed unto his subjects the theme shall be dry, and not in the British sense of humor way. He gives some hints on what he means when he reminds us:
there’s an entire section of the human sensory experience that enjoys things like wines, dry sherries, dry cider, crisp pilsners, dry lambics, gin with soda not tonic and neat spirits.
A very specific challenge indeed. I decided to run with one of his suggestions and start with sherry as a jumping off point. I assure you this had nothing to do with the fact that my bar has been missing this bottle for a while, and I needed a reason to replenish the stock.
Thinking about other dry bottles at my disposal was a bit trickier. Until my eyes landed on the first bottle of aquavit I’d ever purchased, Linie from Norway. This Scandinavian liqueur is heavily flavored with spices like caraway, cardamom and anise. A mix that fit the bill nicely. Savory rye spiciness felt like a solid combo with the nuttiness of the sherry.
Since dryness was the theme, a spirit forward drink was the only way to go. That meant no syrups or fruit juices here. For the final ingredient, I took the theme to heart with dry vermouth. I mean, it’s right there in the name – it just has to work.
Clean and crisp. That’s the first thing that popped into my head after the initial sip. A strong start considering the direction set forth by the Baron. Overall a nice balance. With aquavit acting as the base, the edges of the drink were a little prickly from the rye. Puckering grape from both the sherry and vermouth was present on the nose and tongue. Sherry also provided a lovely richness to the drink, adding a bit of elegance on the finish.
Naming inspiration came from both this month’s theme and the Linie Aquavit. What sets this bottle apart from others of its ilk is every barrel spends time on the open ocean, going on a trip that crosses the equator multiple times. The rolling of the ship combined with the sea air make for a unique aging experience. In fact, you can go to their website and type in the date on the bottle to see the exact route your spirit took. Anyway, clearly ships play a big part in this drink. And where do ships go when they need repairs – a dry dock. A perfect name for a cocktail celebrating a less traveled corner of the flavor palate.
***UPDATE*** The roundup is posted.