Celebrating the end of one F(&(*&%$ shi&^%^ful week wherein my sister had a seizure, my father was admitted to the hospital for a few days, a friend of mine had a serious personal problem that she needed my help with, and another friend of mine's mom died of cancer like my Mom (this in addition to my usual 18 hour days, work, class, trying to get papers done and bar applications filed).
Drinking a Knob Creek Rye Manhattan right now. This is pretty decent rye, way better than their bourbon. With Petrucci Spanish sweet vermouth; very decent, like Carpano Antica, but a little less mentholy (which I like) and a little less earthy (which I don't like as much). Not enough to unseat Cocchi Vermouth del Torino as the best Manhattan vermouth for me.
Earlier in the evening, drank a new creation, made in honor of a wonderful cocktail I had at Star Bar in Tokyo. My working title is 'Dry Orange Cocktail', which is what I am going for, but this is going to be good enough to warrant a new name:
1.5 oz Hendricks
1 oz Cocchi Americano
0.5 oz Cointreau
0.25 oz. Mandarin Napoleon
0.25 oz Lemon Juice
Two dashes orange bitters (I used Angostura for its fruity profile)
Orange peel to garnish.
The Cocchi gives it a pleasant bitterness and contains some citrus notes itself; the Cointreau and the Mandarin really doubles up on the orange notes that I am trying to focus on, and the lemon juice tones down all that sweet. I was afraid, as I was making it, that it might be too CR#2 ish, but it isn't at all and I am glad for that. I would like it a little dryer, and a little less sweet though. I may sub in some dry vermouth (Vya Whisper Dry, perhaps) for the Cocchi, maybe 0.5:0.5. I didn't use orange juice because it is so weak in a cocktail; not as concentrated as it needs to be to shine. If I had something like, say, a Seville bitter orange, that might be great. But I don't.