If you fancy a cocktail with a strong bitter punch, meet the famed Sherman cocktail that is sure to please your palate. A staple at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City during the 1930’s, Sherman is a twist on the classic Manhattan with the addition of absinthe and two types of bitters – angostura and orange.
The spicy and dry tone of rye whisky ties exquisitely well with the bitter sweet texture of the rest of the concoction. The first known recipe book, “Old Waldorf Bar Days” by Albert Crockett, compiled for those seeking to serve sophisticated beverages features the Sherman recipe among a collection of 350 odd cocktail recipes.
The debated ingredient absinthe, often referred to as La Fee Verte (The Green Fairy) in historical literature, is infamous for inducing hallucinations and fueling creativity.
While traditionalists condemned the drink and its alleged degenerative aspects and psychoactive properties, artists like Van Gogh, Toulouse-Lautrec, Oscar Wilde, Ernest Hemingway, Paul Verlaine have hinged on this high-proof spirit for artistic stimulus.
Make your own Sherman cocktail
To fix yourself a glass of this ol’ pot-valiant you will need 60 ml of rye whiskey, 30 ml of sweet vermouth, 1/2 teaspoon absinthe, 1/8 teaspoon Angostura bitters, 1/8 teaspoon orange bitters.
Place ice in a cocktail pitcher or shaker. Pour in whiskey, sweet vermouth, and absinthe. Add Angostura and orange bitters. Shake well and strain the cocktail into a rocks glass. Garnish with a twist of lemon. Sit back and enjoy.
This simple drink became popular in the 1970s. Though, no one's really sure of its origin.
Bourbon cocktails are much harder to make, compared to rye whiskey cocktails. Bourbon has a natural sweetness that can sometimes mar other flavors used in making cocktails. Whereas rye whiskey, with a drier and spicier flavor, usually serves as a far better base that give cocktails that extra punch.
The tale of Old Pal is laced with mysteries and contradictions, much like the celebrities of the era that its creator played host to. Between the two great wars when America was dying of thirst, Prohibition was driving the likes of Coco Chanel and Ernest Hemingway back into the arms of Paris where people could still get a drink and talk about great things.