While it will take about 3 months for the cocktail to finish, we started to make it this week. Yes, that’s a 3 month window of production. Sounds like a long time to wait for a drink? Not really once you taste the results.
The Barrel-Aged Cocktail has been making it way around the country and is now firmly in Connecticut at the Max Restaurant Group. We started this week with a variation on the Manhattan by blending Hudson White Corn Whiskey from New York’s Hudson Valley with Doling Dry Vermouth from France and just a touch of Regan’s Orange Bitters from Louisiana. We didn’t make just one drink, though – we made a barrel full of it – 5 gallons to be precise. This mixture is taking its time mellowing and coming together in an oak barrel that previously held whiskey from Hudson Distillery. The idea is that over the next few months the cocktail’s elements will have the opportunity to really meld with each other, pickup some color and sweet vanilla flavors from the barrel and be affected by the slow integration of oxygen – an element typically not found in cocktails.
The end result will be a smooth and mellow Manhattan that is easy to drink and delicious to sip. We plan to make it available early to mid-June, or when the drink is ready.
We will be expanding this concept at Max Fish, as well as introducing it at Trumbull Kitchen and Max Oyster Bar. We are planning on doing a tasting event featuring all the variations we mix up sometime in June. Perhaps you can let us know which are the best combinations??