The Ampersand cocktail is a classic concoction that dates back to the early 20th century. It's believed to have been named after the '&' symbol, which represents the combination of ingredients that come together to create a harmonious blend.
- The cocktail is a favorite among connoisseurs of classic drinks.
- It's often enjoyed by those who appreciate the depth and complexity of its ingredients.
- The Ampersand is a testament to the art of cocktail making, where balance is key.
The Ampersand cocktail offers a rich and velvety taste, with the warmth of cognac, the botanical notes of Old Tom gin, and the sweet, herbal complexity of sweet vermouth. The orange bitters add a subtle citrusy zing, creating a well-rounded and sophisticated flavor profile.
Ampersand cocktail pairs beautifully with a cheese platter, especially one that includes aged cheddars, creamy bries, or nutty goudas, as the rich flavors complement the depth of the cognac and the botanicals of the gin.
An assortment of cured meats such as prosciutto, salami, and chorizo offers savory and salty contrasts that stand up nicely to the Ampersand's complexity.
The sweetness of the chocolate desserts can be a delightful counterbalance to the herbal and citrus hints in the cocktail. Dark chocolate truffles or a rich chocolate torte would be particularly fitting.
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Switch up the cognac for bourbon, introducing a touch of American spirit. Keep everything else the same, and you'll have a drink with a little more smoke, a touch of vanilla, and a distinctly American twist.
Add 0.75 oz of fresh lemon juice and 0.5 oz of simple syrup to the original recipe. This will create a brighter, tangier cocktail that's sure to pucker your lips and make you smile.
Muddle some fresh seasonal fruit (like berries or peach) in your mixing glass before adding the other ingredients. This will result in a fruity and refreshing twist, perfect for summer sipping on your front porch.
What type of glass is best suited for serving an Ampersand cocktail?
An Ampersand cocktail is traditionally served in a chilled cocktail glass, also known as a martini glass, to maintain its temperature and enhance its elegant presentation.
Can I make an Ampersand cocktail in advance?
Pre-mixing the cognac, gin, and vermouth is possible, but it is recommended to add the orange bitters and stir with ice right before serving to maintain the integrity of the flavors.
Is it possible to make a non-alcoholic version of the Ampersand?
While the Ampersand is an inherently alcoholic drink, non-alcoholic spirits are available that mimic the flavors of cognac and gin for a mocktail variation, although the profile will differ from the original.
What does the term 'dashes' refer to in the recipe?
In cocktail recipes, 'dashes' refer to a small, quick pour of a liquid ingredient, typically from a dasher bottle, which is commonly used for bitters.
Why do I need to stir the Ampersand cocktail instead of shaking it?
Stirring is the preferred method for cocktails that are solely composed of spirits, like the Ampersand, as it chills and dilutes the drink without introducing air bubbles or cloudiness that shaking would cause.
How do I store sweet vermouth after opening?
Sweet vermouth should be stored in the refrigerator after opening to preserve its flavor and prevent spoilage. It typically remains fresh for about a month.
What is the difference between Old Tom Gin and London Dry Gin?
Old Tom Gin has a slightly sweeter profile and a less pronounced juniper flavor compared to the more common London Dry Gin, which is known for its crisp, clean, and juniper-forward taste.