So as you've likely noticed by now, I'm pretty gay for Death & Co. It is by far my favorite bar in New York and quite possibly (although it'd have some stiff competition) the Americas (and also, I would withhold final judgment until I get a chance to visit the "capital-N nicest" bar ever patronized by another cocktail deity o'mine, Eric Felten).
It's quite embarrassing to admit, ergo, that I've darkened Death & Co.'s doorway a scant three times in my entire life. I rationalize this by likening Death & Co. to Christmas: Just because it's my favorite holiday doesn't mean I wish it to come 'round more than once a year, in large part because it can be quite expensive indulging joy.
One of the many, many things I love about Death & Co. (I'll divulge more throughout the week) is that patrons are encouraged to take home a copy of the cocktail lounge's menu, thus allowing me to get my fix the other 363-ish nights of the year when I am not reveling in the best $13 cocktail I've had since the last one I ordered there. I also find this to be effective marketing on the bar's part: The menu lists cocktails' ingredients in what I assume to be descending order of quantity, on the one hand affording me a decent compass for recreating their cocktails at home, on the other enticing me with yet another incentive to return soon, so I can find out how well I managed to make my replicas.
This week is Death & Co. week at the blog, a week in which I'll offer my takes on some of their more user-friendly concoctions. My first pick is the Cure for Pain -- aptly named, as it's an exceptionally rounded drink. Somewhere between the port and the creme de cacao, all the rough-hewnness of the rye, the bite of the bourbon and the distinct Campari-ness of the Campari is transmogrified into a cocktail of complete smoothness, a drink with no acute beginning or end but plenty of vagaries and tempting grace notes in the middle. I dare say one could easily gulp the damn thing in one genteel swig.
And to think it comes from combining six liquors! I don't think I've mixed so many liquors together since I made one of those Mongolian Motherfuckers.
Just kidding. I've never made one of those. There are certain rules of decorum that Death & Co. patrons must abide by (I'll also get in to those later on in the week), and I'm pretty sure dropping the MF-bomb isn't one of them.
The Cure for Pain
(Adapted from Death & Co.)
1 1/4 ounces Old Overholt Rye
3/4 ounce Stock sweet vermouth
3/4 ounce Henry McKenna bourbon
1/2 ounce Otima 10yr Tawny Port
1/2 ounce white creme de cacao
1 teaspoon Campari
Orange peel, for garnish
Stir all liquid ingredients in your ice-filled mixing glass of choice. Strain into a cocktail glass. Rim glass with orange peel, then twist while holding over the mouth of the glass and drop into drink.