Cocktail Week – Day 5: The Manhattan


I would apologize for having missed the three greatest days of Cocktail Week, but I just can’t bring myself to feel too bad about it.

About a month ago, my sister was accepted into Georgetown’s School of Nursing & Health Studies. At 18, she already knows how she’s going to make her corner of the world a safer place. I’ve got a romantic vision of my time-travelling alter ego tending soldiers on the edges of Waterloo or the Somme, but let’s be honest – I turn ashen at the sight of blood. Last night I took a quarter-inch strip of skin off my pointer finger in a tragic brownie accident (for an absurd accident, there was quite a bit of blood) and had to lie down for a good ten minutes, slowly sipping a big glass of orange juice. Truly, I’d make a dismal doctor.

But Alice, she’s got it. Of course, she’s good with the science – ever since she was a little girl, just two huge blue eyes and a mess of blonde hair, she’s leaned in to science. Lincoln logs, K’nex, The Way Things Work – these puzzles were her Narnia. But more than just the skill, she’s got a genuine kindness. When she sees someone who could use her help, it would be anathema for her to turn away. I can think of few people who better encompass the ideal of cura personalis than my sister.

Dan and I spent this past weekend with my family. They’d come to town so Alice could look at Georgetown up close, as her future home instead of a place Dan and I love. Otto Porter didn’t personally request the pleasure of Allie’s company at Georgetown, but apparently the visit was satisfactory in all other regards. We are so pleased to welcome Georgetown’s newest Hoya, Alice Anne, this coming August!

So, in the midst of the celebratory sazaracs, I fell behind on cocktail week. To make up for it, here’s Dan making a Manhattan.


Friday (let’s pretend): The Manhattan 

“Learn to make a proper Manhattan and you will know how to create at least one flawless thing in this world, and the person you’re making it for will know, and respect that about you.”

David Wondrich


Ingredients – Makes 1

2 ou. Rye Whisky

1 ou. Sweet vermouth

Angostura bitters

Maraschino cherry

1. Put that cocktail glass in the freezer. Set the timer. At least 15 minutes.

2. Crack about four ice cubes with the back of a bar spoon into a cocktail shaker.

3. Pour 2 ou. Rye whisky and 1 ou. sweet vermouth over the cracked ice.


4. Shake in anywhere from 2-6 dashes of Angostura bitters into the drink. Dan says to stop when you can smell the bitters. Stir for a while, thoroughly.


5. Strain into the cold, cold glass and garnish with the cherry.



Cocktail Week – Day 4: The Old Fashioned


I recognize that this week isn’t exactly one that just flew by for most people (see The Onion), but cocktail week does seem to be clipping along at a rather rapid pace. We’ve been drinking together for the past three days. We’ve had forays into Rye, dipped our toes in Rum, toasted with Gin. For three days straight, we’ve had the foresight to chill a cocktail glass a full fifteen minutes before we actually intended to imbibe. We’ve juiced enough citrus to cure a boat of sailors of scurvy.

But it’s Thursday, and good lord, I’m tired! Enough with the cocktail glasses! Enough with the fancy liquors in the fancy bottles! I want a real drink – stiff, no frills. Tomorrow it will be Friday, and they’ll be time to let those glasses chill while we groove to Pandora’s Soul playlist. But tonight, it’s still Thursday. There’s still one more workday in this week (this goddamn week!).

But don’t worry. We’re having Old Fashioneds tonight, and in a matter of minutes you’ll have your pick between the penultimate episode of Project Runway (#TeamMichelle) and a double feature of Parks & Rec (#TeamApril). The week’s almost over. I promise.


Thursday: The Old Fashioned



1 sugar cube

1 lemon

2 maraschino cherries

Bushmills Whiskey

Angostura Bitters


1. Place your sugar cube in an old fashioned glass. Glug (on Thursdays, we glug) three splashes of Angostura bitters over the sugar cube, and muddle.


2. Peel a long strip of lemon peel. Add 1 cherry and the lemon peel to the bitters/sugar mixture and muddle some more.


3. Fill the glass with a bunch of ice cubes, pour 2.5 ounces of whiskey over it, and stir. Add in a splash of seltzer. Put in the extra cherry, and enjoy!



Cocktail Week – Day 3: The Saint Anne’s


Somewhere in Brooklyn, there’s a bartender named Kevin who can shake it like no other.

Despite having spent the first eighteen years of my life in New York, I know very little of what it means to be an adult in that city. Even though most Saturday nights find me and Dan at home, slippers on, curling up for an evening with the Doctor, we do go out enough to have a few favorite bars. Want an incredible cocktail experience, catered to your taste? Go to the Columbia Room. Want to get a feel for Georgetown? You clearly have to spend an evening at the Tombs. Tabbard Inn has the city’s coziest fireplace, Churchkey has the best beer selection, and nothing can beat the Passenger’s old fashioneds and kimchi hotdogs.

But ask me for New York picks, and I draw a blank. I’ve enjoyed evenings at both the Clover Club and Pegu Club, but what can you really learn from one visit? Dan and I are both longing to pay a visit to the Dead Rabbit, because who doesn’t want a communal punch bowl, but everything we’ve learned about it so far is pure hearsay.

So if you’re thinking of taking the plunge and moving to the city, or are just flying up for a weekend of theater and food, I can offer only a few solid recommendations: go to Franny’s, drink their wine, eat their pizza; spend a pre-theater evening at Joe Allen’s, because all the greats have; and go to James. Sit at the bar, peruse their cocktail menu. Order the herb fries – insist on mayonnaise as an accompanying condiment. If you’re in the mood for a drink that tastes like pure spring, grassy and sweet, order the Saint Anne’s.

If you’re very lucky, Kevin will be there to shake it for you.


Wednesday: The Saint Anne’s*


Ingredients (Makes 1)

 1 lemon

1 sugar cube

1 stem of marjoram

2 ou Gin (I am such a fan of Barr Hill, but use your favorite here. It’s worth mixing the nice one)

1 ou St Germain


1. Place a cocktail glass in the freezer to chill at least fifteen minutes before you want your beverage.

2. Juice your lemon – you want about an ounce of lemon juice.


3. Place the sugar cube in a cocktail shaker and pour the lemon juice over it. Add the leaves from the stem of marjoram and muddle.


4. Pour in the gin and St Germain. Add 4-6 ice cubes. Shake it with everything you’ve got.


5. Strain into the chilled cocktail glass and enjoy.


* Adapted from the Saint Anne’s at James’ in Brooklyn