Tonight's cocktail of the evening is a variation on the Aviation, which is one of my favorite gin drinks. I wanted to play with a hibiscus-based liqueur here, in place of the Crème de Violette that gives this cocktail its beautiful blue color. I don't know if there are any commercially-made hibiscus liqueurs out there, but I wouldn't want to buy a bottle just to try this one drink. Instead, I turned to Smuggler's Cove: Exotic Cocktails, Rum, and the Cult of Tiki for a house-made recipe that would work. I wanted something a little more botanical and earth for the gin, so instead of going with a London Dry-style gin, I turned to St. George Terroir Gin. A bit of that earthiness comes through, especially on the back of the taste. Next time, I might try this with their Dry Rye Resposado Gin to see what that brings to the mix. (The problem with that is that it's a limited release, so when that bottle is gone, I'm not going to be able to duplicate the drink.
I think this one is a success, though I think I used the wrong glass and garnish for it. It deserves to be spread out in a coupe, with a hibiscus flower floating on the top. Also, I want to play a bit with the proportions; I might cut the Crème de Hibiscus down to a barspoon or two to see what that does (and I might kick it up to 1/2 oz to see what that does.) I'm calling this one Petal on the Wind, with all due apologies to Wash and Joss Whedon.
- 2 oz Gin
- 1/2 oz Maraschino Liqueur
- 1/2 oz Fresh Lemon Juice
- 1/4 oz Hibiscus Liqueur
- Combine all ingredients in a shaker, add ice, and shake for 20 - 30 seconds to chill.
- Double-strain into a cocktail coupe.
- Garnish with a fresh Hibiscus blossom
- Go re-watch Firefly while enjoy this beverage.