It’s been a long Mother’s Day weekend, a busy work week is just a few hours off, and I’m really not in the mood to get all fancy with the liquor cabinet — the couch and the remainder of the Sunday paper just look too inviting. But I’m 23 drinks into this thing, so I can’t stop now.
Nothing I had planned to write about is really grabbing me right now, so here’s a drink I’ve been thinking about recently, being blogged about on the fly; let’s see how it plays out:
The Home Stretch
- 1 1/2 ounces gin
- 1/2 ounce fino sherry
- 1/4 ounce pear liqueur*
- 1 dash Regan’s orange bitters
Stir, strain. That’s it
* for the pear liqueur, the Rothman & Winter Orchard Pear is lovely and light; slightly richer is Xante, a relatively new cognac-based liqueur (disclaimer: a sample of Xante was provided for review).
I love the taste of pears, but have been disappointed with many pear-oriented cocktails: some pear liqueurs taste tinny and artificial, whereas the liqueurs that actually taste like pears are very gentle, and the flavor is easily obscured by other ingredients.
For this drink, I used Hendricks for the gin — thinking its delicate nature might prove a good foundation for the pear — Lustau for the fino and Xante for the pear liqueur.
On first try, I like it — perhaps I’ll bump up the sherry in future versions (I finished the bottle while making this one), but it’s a good balance between the bone dryness of the gin and sherry combo and the richness of the pears. My jury is still out on Xante; the first taste I had of the liqueur turned me off as slightly artificial, but subsequent experiences have warmed me to it, though I’m still having a tough time imagining many cocktails that would use it to good effect. In this drink, its richness isn’t shining through, so the Rothman & Winter may be a better bet for future versions .
All in all, a respectable effort — not dynamite by any means, but not a sinker either.
Has anyone tried working with pear liqueurs to good effect? I’d love to have some ideas to work with.
This drink is part of 30/30, a series of 30 drinks in 30 days — or as much as I can keep up before collapsing in a weary, booze-addled heap.