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PL at Work: Opulent Libations

Our favorite bartender (and PL member) Marcus Fontenot shares some of his favorite drinks..er…tips for staying warm as the weather cools.


With Fall in full swing and the weather getting colder, everyone will be adding on layers of clothing, but as a bartender, I find that in appropriate situations, it’s the best time of year to warm up from the inside out. When it comes to herbal refreshments, a nice Whiskey or Bourbon will always keep the body warm during the inclement weather. Compared to other spirits, the whiskey/bourbon flavor doesn’t always pair as obligingly mixed with liqueurs and fruit juices, which makes it one of the trickiest base ingredients to use in cocktails. However, it is by no means lacking its classic recipes. Below, you will find some of my favorite, delicious libations crafted to pure opulence for you to enjoy. Whether served hot or cold, a night on the town or at home snuggled by the fire, I always choose whiskey as the perfect go-to for the season, and these recipes are the reasons why…

*here’s a tip: they are best made with a call liquor.

KENTUCKY MULE: When you need a little cool and refreshing spice in your life, try one of these; the sister/brother to the popular Moscow Mule. The ginger beer gives a nice herbal contrast to even the most bitter of alcohols.

  • 2 ounces Kentucky Bourbon
  • 1/2 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Ginger beer
  • fresh lime wedges

*Pour Bourbon and lime juice into a chilled highball glass or traditionally a copper mug, 1/3 filled with ice cubes. Top off with ginger beer and garnish with a lime slice. *A copper mug is not a necessity for taste, but it does add a nice touch.

MANHATTAN: When you’re feeling a little classy and want a cocktail that says, “I’m a mature drinker”, without saying, “I’m bougie”, a Manhattan is an excellent addition to your drink repertoire.

  • 2 ounces Bourbon
  • 1/2 ounce sweet vermouth
  • dash of bitters
  • splash of cherry juice
  • cherry

*Stir or shake ingredients in a mixing tin with cracked ice. Strain into a martini glass or highball glass, and serve straight up. Garnish with a cherry.

SEATTLE FREEZE: This drink may be cold like the shoulders of the occasional Seattleite, but after a few of these subtle, yet tangy cocktails, you’ll be warm and ready to the most social of the butterflies. Being a super simple drink to make, its versatility works during the day, for happy hour with friends, or a fancy evening dinner date.

  • 2 ounces Kentucky Bourbon
  • 1.5 ounces cranberry juice
  • 1 tbsp Lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp of simple syrup

*Shake ingredients in a mixing tin full of ice cubes. Strain into a chilled highball glass full of large ice cubes. Garnish with a slice of lemon and perhaps a couple of cranberries; ‘tis the season!

HOT TODDY: Warm and soothing to a sore throat, this drink is perfect when you need additional warmth throughout the body. Made with a little lemon and raw honey, the Hot Toddy will have you feeling as if you’re wrapped up in a blanket.

  • 2 ounces Irish Whiskey
  • 1 tsp raw honey
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • Hot water

*In a glass used for hot drinks, mix whiskey, lemon juice and top off with hot water. Stir in honey and garnish with a lemon. Adding a cinnamon stick to stir, adds a nice spice kick!

If all else fails, a nice whiskey served neat to sip on will do the trick. If you’re feeling really daring, add a splash of water. For those trying to turn up, pickle backs paired with a sensible whiskey shot are all the rage. Whichever you decide, please remember to drink responsibly! If you’re here in Seattle, come by and see me at the Madison Pub and let’s discuss these Fall Libations and test them out! -Marcus Jeremy

GOVERNMENT WARNING:

(1) According to the Surgeon General, women should not drink alcoholic beverages during pregnancy because of the risk of birth defects.

(2) Consumption of alcoholic beverages impairs your ability to drive a car or operate machinery and may cause health problems.

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