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Apothecary Cocktails

Apothecary Cocktails

Restorative Drinks from Yesterday and Today
by Warren Bobrow 

Fair Winds Press, 2013

The first cocktails were concocted centuries ago by apothecaries, physicians, pharmacists, and anyone who specialized in healing ailments. They blended alcohol and liqueurs with herbs, fruit, flowers, spices and more to create  tinctures, bitters, elixirs, and tonics touted to cure tummy troubles, respiratory ailments, aches, pains, and more.
Apothecary Cocktails

Not all of these potions were effective, any more than today's medicines cure all, and some were downright dangerous, but the better curatives prevailed and became the basis for many modern prescriptions and nightclub cocktails.

This book is a happy collection of 75 recipes for digestives, relaxants, painkillers, restoratives and mood enhancers as well as winter warmers and hot weather refreshers, combining cocktail history, herbal advice and instruction for anyone looking to alleviate an ailment or seeking a 
good excuse to imbibe.

A spiral-bound volume inside stiff illustrated boards, Apothecary Cocktails includes recipes for Hot Buttered Rum, Mexican Sleep Cure, The Hartley Dodge Cocktail, Lemon Balm Gin and Tonic, Sambuca Twist, Doctor Livesey's Cocktail, Navy Grog, Old Oak Tree Cocktail, Scotsman's Slumber, Root and Rye, Watermelon Martini, Almond Pastis, and Sake Racer.

Look in the back of the book for a instructions for making simple syrups,  purees and infusions.

Absinthe Frappe

These days, when we think of frappes, we usually imagine high-octane, sugar-laden, iced-coffee drinks. Traditionally, though, a frappe is simply a liqueur poured over shaved ice... This take on the frappe privileges absinthe, which has a reputation for alleviating aches of all sorts due to its high alcohol level.

Known as the Green Fairy because of the high chlorophyll levels of the botanicals originally used in its production - and because the psychoactive substances that were also present in them could make heavy drinkers hallucinate - absinthe is said to ease headaches and general malaise, and to soothe stomachs made onery from exposure to spoiled food.

2 ounces (60ml) absinthe

1/2 ounce (15ml) simple syrup

10 fresh mint leaves (plus extra for garnish)

3 ounces (90ml) seltzer water

Crushed, pebble-sized ice
Combine the absinthe, simple syrup, and mint leaves in a large martini glass. Add the ice a spoonful at a time as you stir the absinthe mixture gently with a bar spoon, so that the glass becomes frosty. When the glass is nearly full, top with the seltzer water and stir gently. Tear a few mint leaves and strew them over the top of the drink. When nothing else will shift that truly dogged headache, this icy concoction can help.

Apothecary Cocktails

The Hartley Dodge Cocktail

Bourbon or rye whiskey combined with sweet vermouth laced with healing bittrs can act as a powerful painkiller. Although this prescriptive resembles the classic Manhattan, adding muddled peach slices to the mix adds a sweet, fresh, seasonal flavor thanks to the summery stone fruit.

3 slices fresh peach, plus extra slices for garnish

3 ounces (90ml) bonded 100-proof bourbon whiskey

1 ounce (30ml) sweet vermouth

4 dashes Fee Brothers Whiskey Biutters

Ice cubes
Place the peach slices in a Boston shaker, and muddle them. Add the bourbon and vermouth, and continue to muddle so that the flavors are well combined. Add the butters and a handful of ice cubes, and stir well. Strain into a Collins glass over a large chunk of ice (larger pieces of ice are less likely to dilute the drink). Garnish with an extra slice or two of fresh peach. It's analgesic that can't help but take the edge off what ails you.

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