The Auld Draper and starting out small with a home bar

Auld Draper Cocktail // stirandstrain.comNote: this post has nothing to do with Don Draper, but there are some real life drapers involved in the creation of the below cocktail. Ok, let’s continue.

One question I get asked pretty often is: How do you stock a home bar if you’re getting serious about making craft cocktails at home? If you have unlimited funds, then no problem, buy the liquor store. However, for most of us, this isn’t an option. I got started small. Every time I went to pick up a staple ingredient, like a bourbon or some more gin, I’d also pick up a bottle (or two if the paycheck was stretchy that week) of something unfamiliar to me, a liquor I hadn’t used or heard of. Before long, I had started to amass a decent amount of liquors that I could call upon when the time deemed it necessary. Now, I had also made a list after combing through some cocktail books first, and also checked on what brands to avoid, so if I picked up a bottle that cost me $40, I wasn’t going to be sad at the quality or taste (well, there were a few that took a bit to get used to. Canton, I’m looking at you!).

That’s how I ended up with a bottle of Byrrh. It was on the list of “to buy” although, long forgotten as to “for what”. Recently the folks at Serious Eats had me come up with a simple to make cocktail recipe, and I thought that perhaps I should try the Byrrh out in it. You can read more of the article, over here. Did you know the Byrrh is really old? And was created by a couple of brothers who were also drapers? History! It’s fascinating!Auld Draper Cocktail // stirandstrain.com

Ready for a drink now? This one is pretty easy, and more crafty than some of my recent drinks.

2 ounces dry gin, such as Caorunn Scottish Gin*
3/4 ounce Byrrh
3 dashes orange bitters

Flamed orange peel for garnish

  • Add gin, Byrrh, and bitters to a mixing glass. Fill 2/3 full with ice. Stir until well chilled, about 20 seconds. Strain into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish with flamed orange peel.

Caorunn Scottish Gin provides a clean, dry, and slightly spicy framework for Byrrh’s bitter nature. The citrus notes from the gin accent those found in the Byrrh, and the drink gets an added touch of bitter citrus from orange bitters and a flamed orange peel. The complete cocktail is a perfect balance of sweet and bitter with a rich texture that lets you linger.

*Items generously given gratis and appear here because I like them. For more info on sponsored products, affiliate links, and gifted booze, please visit the About page.

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