Bamboo

Bamboo cocktail. Istockphoto.com photo

Nobody really knows the back story of this sherry-based cocktail from the 19th century, but we do know that it quenches our thirst for all things low-proof and lightly bittered.

• 1.5 oz dry sherry
• 1.5 oz dry vermouth
• 1 dash Angostura bitters
• 1 dash orange bitters

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Falling for falernum

Step by step: How to make the secret ingredient that puts the terrific into tiki drinks

Before you start, assemble your ingredients. Dan Toulgoet photo

In bartending, there’s a simple rule called the Golden Ratio: two parts spirit, one part sweet, one part sour. If you apply this rule to your drink making, you can quickly learn dozens of cocktails.

If you dissect a Daiquiri for example, it is simply two parts rum, one part lime juice, one part simple syrup. Sometimes you can use a sweet liqueur to replace the simple syrup, like Curaçao in the case of a Margarita. Depending on your palate, you can increase or decrease the sour and sweet elements or adjust the amount of spirits to create the right balance. In fact, herein lies one of the secrets of fine cocktail making: Bartenders often create one-of-a-kind cocktails by transforming classics simply by using different spirits, sours and sweets.

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El Mocambo

Justin Taylor’s El Mocambo gives tiki a Canadian twist. Dan Toulgoet photo

Named after the legendary live-music venue in Toronto, this tiki-style cocktail takes on a Canadian twist.

• 1.5 oz Canadian 100 percent rye whisky
• 0.75 oz falernum
• 2 oz coconut water
• 1 oz freshly squeezed pink grapefruit juice
• 0.5 oz freshly squeezed lime juice
• 3 dashes Bittered Sling Kensington bitters

Garnish:

• 5 mint leaves
• 1 mint sprig
• 2 whole almonds

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Zombie Punch

Justin Taylor’s Zombie Punch serves a crowd! Dan Toulgoet photo

This tiki punch recipe serves a crowd—so find some friends to help you out!

• 6 oz añejo rum
• 6 oz dark Jamaican rum
• 4 oz high-proof rum (such as Lamb’s Navy 151)
• 3 oz freshly squeezed lime juice
• 1.5 oz freshly squeezed pink grapefruit juice
• 3 oz falernum
• 1 oz pomegranate juice
• 2 tsp Pernod
• 10 oz filtered water

Garnish:
• 5 sprigs mint
• 3 cinnamon sticks, snapped in half
• 6 wheels grapefruit

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Mai Tai

The classic Mai Tai. Jennifer Gauthier photo

A classic from the tiki-culture pantheon.

• 1.5 oz aged rum such as Mount Gay Eclipse
• 0.5 oz Cointreau
• 1.5 oz orgeat
• 1 oz lime juice

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A-Star

Michael Hallman’s A-Star uses Monashee Spirits’ peaflower-infused Ethos Gin

• 2 oz Monashee Spirits Ethos Gin infused with Butterfly Pea flowers (color changing gin)
• 0.5 oz Maraschino Cherry Liqueur
• 0.25 oz Lavender Simple Syrup
• 0.25 oz Fresh Lemon juice 

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“Espresso” Martini

The “Espresso” Martini at Blackbird is actually made with house-made cold brew concentrate.

• 60ml Absolut vodka
• 30ml Kahlua
• 45ml Cold Brew concentrate* (espresso from home machine easy substitute)
• 3 dash Fee Brothers Black Walnut bitters
• 15ml simple syrup

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Sazerac

Sazerac. Dan Toulgoet photo

A great classic that belongs in every barkeep’s repertoire.

• 1 tsp (approximately) absinthe or pastis
• 1 cube sugar or 1 tsp simple syrup
• 3 or 4 dashes Peychaud’s bitters
• 2 oz Cognac, rye whisky, or a mix of both
• Lemon peel for garnish

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El Pelonchas

Cuchillo’s El Pelonchas. Dan Toulgoet photo

• 0.75 oz. Sombra Mezcal
• 0.75 oz. Jameson’s Irish Whisky
• 0.75 oz. Ginger Agave Syrup*
• 0.75 oz. fresh squeezed lemon juice

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