Cocktail: The Koval Wry Pamplemousse

April 23 2013 - 1:00 PM

When I debuted the Wry Pamplemousse, the reaction was universal. This was it.  Spring? Check. Midwestern? Check. Crowd-pleasing? Check. Delicious? Double check.

Two good friends had commissioned me to make a cocktail for their wedding, and the requirements were a tall order. The Indianapolis natives were getting married in Chicago, so they wanted it to be evocative of their new home, and the ceremony would take place in an open barn in May, so it should also be seasonal. Oh, and by the way, this would be the only cocktail on the menu, so everyone better love it.

Test, scratch out, mix, dump, remix, change, alter, abandon, clutter, declutter, and then… “ta-da.”

With a base of Koval’s white rye, I fulfilled the local character component and provided a universally-appealing backbone. The whisky then melds gracefully with grapefruit — a sorely underappreciated combination – and gets a dose of St. Germain and orange bitters to evoke springtime’s promise of a new beginning. Then, in a final flourish, a touch of crème de cacao hides in the background and emerges on the finish with a pleasing chocolate end.

The drink was a resounding success and the couple even mixed one as part of the vows. The groom poured in the spirit as a sign of his strength and the bride added the sweeteners to evoke the spice and flavor she brought to the union. A dash of bitters each and “til death do us part.”

Read a little more about Koval Distillery and then check out our recipe for the Wry Pamplemousse so you can whip one up at home.