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Jan 30, 2013 12:29 AM

Maraschino and Plymouth

A friend recently got me a bottle of Luxardo Maraschino. Great. It's been on my wish list for a while.

I got myself a few bottles of Plymouth because they were twenty bucks a pop. And they've been on my wish list for a while.

I'm sure you all can recommend some worthy potations to try out. So far, I've thrown together a Last Word, Mary Pickford, Blood and Sand, and a Martini. Martini and Last Word were my favorites, Pickford was made using oldish juice so that docked it some points, and the Blood and Sand was okay but sweet and pretty Maraschino-heavy. What would you make with either (or both!) of these fine new ingredients?

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  1. Get some creme de violette and make an Aviation. I use Drillaud.

    1. If you like the Last Word, then try it's modern offspring, Phil Ward's Final Ward. (Gin->Rye; Lime->Lemon).

      And try an Aviation even without the Creme de Violette. Lots of them were made before CdV made it's re-entry into the US market.

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      6 Replies
      1. re: EvergreenDan

        +1 on the Final Ward and Aviation. The Brandy Crusta (or a Whisky Crusta, for that matter) would be my additional recommendation.

        1. re: curseofleisure

          The Final Ward is quite good as well. I believe I saw an Agricole variant on the boards at some point as well (perhaps by JMF?) that I am looking forward to trying when I finally open my HSE.

          I need time with the Aviation to come to a conclusion. Mine is the sans-CdV version. I like it, but I feel like I could like it more with a little ratio tweaking.

          I appreciate the Brandy Crusta recommendation. The out-of-character use of lemon juice as a modifier instead of a major ingredient is intriguing.

          1. re: alphanumeric

            "I appreciate the Brandy Crusta recommendation. The out-of-character use of lemon juice as a modifier instead of a major ingredient is intriguing."

            This statement got my attention. I've never made a Brandy Crusta before, but a Rye Crusta, for which I use something along the lines of Robert Hess's Bourbon Crusta recipe (link below), is part of my regular rotation. In the case of the Bourbon drink, it's just a modified sour (with the nice combination of Maraschino and Triple Sec). I'll have to try the brandy version to see how it compares.


            1. re: davis_sq_pro

              I use Hess's ratios in my crustas, and never noticed recipes printed elsewhere use so much less lemon. I also enjoy the rye version. The first and best crusta I ever had was at a bar in Denver. They used Stranahan's whisky in theirs. The unique character of this locally produced spirit worked very well with the other ingredients.

              1. re: curseofleisure

                Davis: I was simply going by 12bottlebar's recipe. However, it looks like everyone's got their own idea of what a Brandy Crusta should be, with some going so far as to call for a 2:1 of brandy to lemon (clearly a sour at that point). I averaged them all and came up with:
                2 oz cognac
                1/4 oz Cointreau
                1/4 oz lemon juice
                Barspoonful maraschino
                Dash Angostura

                Gave it a taste, seemed a little light on orange flavor and requiring a touch more sweetness so I upped the Cointreau to a half ounce total. Shook, poured, and it's currently in my glass being 'assessed'. A little dry, even for me and I'm no sweet fan. I saw some recipe calling for Peychaud's which I wouldn't mind trying next time, as the Angostura doesn't seem quite right.

                If anyone has a recipe they feel is spot-on, I'd love to hear it.

                1. re: alphanumeric

                  I trust David Wondrich on pretty much related to historical drinks; here's his writeup on the topic:


                  Similar ratio of sweet to sour, but even less of each ingredient. Effectively a slightly modified glass of Cognac. What kind are you using?

      2. What Blood & Sand recipe is this? Normally it is made with scotch, Cherry Heering, sweet vermouth, and orange juice.

        4 Replies
        1. re: yarm

          Second that. Cherry Heering is NOT the same as maraschino liqueur. They are VERY different. Maraschino is a delicate, sweet, and nutty flavor, while cherry heering, to be blunt, tastes like very cough syrup.

          Plymouth is my favorite gin. Oh, if only I could find it that cheap :( It makes me favorite martinis.

          My favorite use of maraschino is in a Hemmingway Daiquiri, which I think is one of THE most perfect hot weather drinks. There are two versions out there, one with sugar, which is how the original was made, and one with sugar/simple syrup, which I think is much better. Oh, and of course combine the Plymouth and Maraschino and try an Aviation.

          1. re: The Big Crunch

            Thanks, guys. I'm not sure why it was transcribed in my notes as Maraschino. I'll give it another go when I get a bottle of Heering. While we're discussing cherry liqueurs, how do kirschwasser and cherry brandy compare?

            1. re: alphanumeric

              No comparison. Heering is a cherry liqueur, basically brandy that has been flavored with cherry fruit and aged. Kirsch is an eua de vie, meaning it is actually distilled from cherries. Again, the best way I can think of to describe cherry heering is sort've a mix between port and cherry cough syrup. Truthfully, it doesn't get used for all that many cocktails. I've had my bottle for a few years now and it's still very full.

              My lone experience with kirsch was trying some several years back when a friend had a bunch of folks over for fondue. She'd bought it for the fondue and I tried a bit, and I thought it was awful. Rough, alcoholic, slightly sweet. Now, I do know there is a lot of variation between really good kirsch and the cheaper stuff. Clear Creek makes kirsch, and my guess is that their product is a lot better than the stuff I sampled. I can't think of any cocktails in which it's used.

              1. re: The Big Crunch

                Ah. That's a shame. I had thought they were a bit more substitutable. Cherry Heering is quite low on my list of 'Next Purchases', so I guess the Blood & Sand and Singapore Sling (that's Heering, right?) will have to wait.

                The reason I'm curious about kirsch is that I have a small homemade bottle I received from a friend in Austria. Also, the Goat's Delight is an unusual cocktail that uses it and orgeat which I am eager to try.