Happy Fourth of July, friends and comrades! We’re celebrating with America’s spirit and transporting you to the Blind Tastes Speakeasy. That’s where Michael and some friends gathered last week with our good buddy Steve Berry, a trusted Bourbon advisor and honorary member of team genuine to whom we come often (and him to us!) to compare notes and taste some Bourbon. We last checked in with him here on the blog in September of 2010 so clearly we are due for an update. And timing couldn’t be better, especially since Beverage Director Ryan Goodspeed has added a few kicking labels to our (at least 51%) distilled corn shelf, in addition to our first barrel aged cocktail!
This story begins one night last fall in Grand Cayman, an unlikely setting since the brown liquor you’ll typically find
cascading going down easy is distilled and aged from sugarcane. Michael, Ryan and myself were settled up to the bar, a usual occurrence, but this night was special. Michael had an idea to swap bourbon for the gin in a classic Negroni. I think this was around the time we did our first pop-up at Harry’s Pizzeria with Gabrielle Hamilton, whose everyday negroni is with Noilly Prat but on certain occasions the Carpano Antica, depending on the weather! After a few different versions altering the proportion of sweet and dry Vermouth, he nailed the Old Pal (or was it the Old Pill?) with Bulleit Bourbon, Campari, Dry Vermouth, Carpano Antico, and Orange Bitters.
It wasn’t until Cochon 555 that our old friend, an American Negroni some might say, reared its glorious head once again, this time flowing from a Hudson Whisky barrel, which you can find now as Michael’s Twitter profile picture.
Well, this Old Pal is back, and now it has aged 3 months and is killing it. Steve-approved, of course. Make its acquaintance at the bar in Miami for the first time tonight (!!!), and get the scoop with Steve’s commentary on our new Bourbons, below. There you’ll also find pictures from the Speakeasy, including one of a killer mango snack Michael concocted that I hope – hint hint – shows up at the restaurant, too!