Friday Night Cocktail: Weeski
Cocktail neophytes often wonder how to go about inventing new drinks. Personally, I don’t do it very often, because my back catalogue of interesting-sounding drinks culled from books and the Internet is already so long that I’ll probably be unable to get through it in this lifetime, unless I spontaneously develop a second liver. That said, there are some rules you can use – “templates,” if you will – that allow you to slot in ingredients more or less at random, and always produce something drinkable, if not always memorable.
One of these templates can be summed up thus: 2 ounces of spirit, 1 ounce of fortified or aromatized wine, 1 teaspoon of liqueur, 2 dashes of bitters. Although it may not work for extreme ingredients (say, 2 oz. mezcal, 1 oz. Madeira, 1 tsp. sambuca, 2 dashes Underberg), only a small amount of care is required in order to make something tasty.
And then, there are those cases where it produces something transcendent. You see, this template comes from David Wondrich, who used it for two drinks in his book Killer Cocktails. One, the Bourbon Dynasty, uses Bourbon, Lillet, crème de cassis and Peychaud’s bitters. The other – oh, the other – is called the Weeski. When you invent a new cocktail, this is what you’re hoping to hit upon.
How to make a Weeski cocktail
- 2 oz. Irish whiskey
- 1 oz. Lillet
- 1 tsp. Cointreau
- 2 dashes orange bitters
Combine all ingredients in an ice-filled mixing glass, stir for a slow count of 20, then strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a lemon twist.
Oddly, I’ve never tried this template out with Canadian whisky. I guess that gives me a project for next Friday night. Or maybe one of you wants to try it, and let me know how it is?