Raiding the Leftovers, Part 1: The Boulevardier

Graduation is just around the corner, but I’ve been feeling particularly thrifty, and so I decided to make something out of (mostly) leftovers.  On hand: mostly-empty bottles of Jim Beam bourbon, Rear Admiral Joseph’s gin, and Dolin sweet vermouth (I save the Carpano Antica for special occasions).  Rear Admiral Joseph is the “house” gin from Trader Joe’s, and isn’t bad for the price, if being thrifty is important.

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Part 1 of Raiding the Leftovers is about the Boulevardier.  The contemporary recipe calls for 2 parts whiskey, but I went ahead and tried out the original proportions.  It’s essentially a Negroni made with whiskey instead of gin, and if you use good whiskey it can be a phenomenally satisfying drink.  If you want the full history in beautiful prose, check out the New York Times Magazine article by Toby Cecchini.  Next week we’ll give the Negroni a shot!

Ingredients
1 oz bourbon or rye whiskey
1 oz Campari
1 oz sweet vermouth
lemon or orange peel for garnish

Directions
Fill a shaker or pint glass with ice and add the liquors.  Stir vigorously with a spoon*.  Strain into a rocks glass with ice, or a coupe straight up.  Garnish with lemon or orange peel.

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If you want to get really fancy, try out a silicon ice sphere mold.  There are lots of brands and designs, so shop around to find something that suits you.  The molds I use are soft silicone, similar to this set sold on Amazon.

*In previous recipes I’ve indicated how long to stir or shake.  The truth is that there is no magic number, and you’ll have to taste a cocktail to know when it’s actually ready.  A starting point is to shake/stir until frost forms on the outside of the container, and adjust if needed when making that cocktail again.  If unsure err on the side of too short a shake/stir, since you can always leave it in the shaker longer, but not the reverse.

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