So my oldest and dearest pal, Lester, feeling a bit fidgety several Fridays ago, texted to coax me off work early. I had cooking to do so I said, “Come over. I’ll make us some Clover Clubs while I finish prep.” After imbibing, I recalled the savvy note from Danny Guess of Fly Bar & Restaurant and video “host” of the iBook 25 Classic Cocktails, that if you add applejack brandy, you have a cocktail called a Pink Lady (all of which were covered in this post). Having finished our drinks and with more egg white on hand, I made us a second, this time a Pink Lady.
Killer cocktail, but such an unfortunate name! This is something you will never hear me utter: “Barkeep, I’ll have a Pink Lady, please.” Can you imagine James Bond ordering a Pink Lady? I can’t imagine Clarence the angel ordering one. I can’t even imagine Donna ordering one.
I’m hoping to fix the problem here by altering the lemon juice to Key lime juice, and calling it a Key Sunrise. Or perhaps maybe even a Key Sunrise, Goddammit.
The team that put together 25 Classic Cocktails notes that it has long been maligned as a “girlie drink.” It also notes that Jayne Mansfield was rumored to have lived on these things. But she was Jayne Mansfield, and Jayne could say whatever the fuck she wanted in a bar. Not me.
This uses an egg white for body. Always a pleasure, but I made a mess in front of Les trying to make two Clover Clubs in a single shaker (you’ve got to shake like mad to denature the egg white protein) and it wouldn’t all quite fit. What to do when making two or more egg-white cocktails? Blender, then ice, then strain into chilled coupes. (The Key limes were gnarly at the grocery store, so I got some Nellie and Joe’s Famous Key Lime Juice). And I am always delighted to pull out the little bottle of pomegranate syrup because it makes me think of the wonderful man who gave it to me as gift at Christmas.
Lester, if you’re reading this, perhaps I could interest you this evening in a Key Sunrise, Goddamit? Before shenanigans begin? Just don’t wear your blue seersucker suit or you’ll look like a Lily Pulitzer ad. A tuxedo, though, be lookin’ sharp with this cocktail.
Key Sunrise for Two
- 3 ounces/90 grams gin
- 1 ounce/30 grams applejack brandy
- 1.5 ounces/45 grams Key lime juice
- 1 ounce/30 grams simple syrup
- 1 ounce Mister Sugar pomegranate syrup or other quality grenadine
- 2 egg whites
- Combine all of the ingredients in a blender and blend till frothy, 5 seconds or so.
- Fill the blender with ice and swirl the contents till the drink is very cold.
- Pour through a fine-mesh strainer into two chilled coupes.
If you liked this post, take a look at these links:
- My recent cocktail posts: El Diablo, The Man About Town, and the Sour Cherry Daiquiri.
- How to make your own grenadine syrup, by Portland, OR, mixologist Jeffrey Morgenthaler (though Anton’s, linked above, is superb).
- The Hour: A Cocktail Manifesto, by Bernard DeVoto, a lovely meditation on that heavenly time of day.
- Check out The Aviary in Chicago; they just won the James Beard Award for outstanding bar program.
© 2013 Michael Ruhlman. Photo © 2013 Donna Turner Ruhlman. All rights reserved.