December 2010

Apricot Dreams

by SOPHIA KERCHER / cocktails by ERIC ALPERIN

NIGEL COX / STEMWARE: TABLEART

Consider the apricot, one of California’s most luscious fruits. Its season may have ended in summer, but its essence in the form of liqueur—the Varnish’s chief mixologist, Eric Alperin, prefers Rothman & Winter Orchard Apricot—can be consumed year-round. “It’s a great intro to martini/Manhattan-style drinks for anyone,” he says. To wit: two fragrant cocktails—Angel Face and Grand Bretagne.

Angel Face

1 ounce Plymouth gin
1 ounce Rothman & Winter Orchard Apricot liqueur
1 ounce 100-proof Laird’s apple brandy
Lemon wheel

In mixing glass, stir all ingredients (except lemon wheel) with cracked ice. Strain into chilled cocktail coupe. Garnish with lemon wheel.


Grand Bretagne

1 egg white
2 ounces Beefeater gin
3⁄4 ounce Rothman & Winter Orchard Apricot liqueur
3⁄4 ounce fresh lemon juice
2 dashes orange bitters (The Varnish uses one each of Regans’ Orange Bitters No. 6 and Fee Brothers West Indian Orange)
Lemon zest

Shake egg white in clean shaker to emulsify. Add remaining ingredients (except lemon zest) with ice and shake vigorously. Strain into chilled goblet. Garnish with lemon zest.