A few days ago we set upon making a four-course salad dinner for friends that we firmly insisted was to be strictly eating only: no photos, no blogging. Sometimes you just have to take a vacation, right? Well, since we’re mildly OCD when it comes to sharing food and booze tricks, we found a loophole and stuck a quick liquid dessert in the freezer. The mix of sour cherry juice, vermouth, bourbon and fresh mint comprises all the ingredients for a traditional Manhattan. When dinner was over we had a popsicle tray of frozen cocktail popsicles (cocksicles!) waiting for us. The result? Tongue-numbing flavor crystals.
Now, the original Manhattan (invented for a New York party thrown for Winston Churchill’s mummy in the late 1890s) hinges on rye whiskey and is less sweet and more mild. Unfortunately, we didn’t have any Rittenhouse rye on hand, so we deigned to use Knob Creek bourbon. Not advised.
Makes 1 popsicle
1 teaspoon sweet vermouth
3 tablespoons sour cherry juice concentrate
2 dashes Angostura bitters
2 mint leaves
2 shots Rittenhouse rye whiskey
1) Remove the stick lid from your popsicle mold. Add 1 teaspoon of vermouth to the chamber and swirl to coat the sides. Pour in the juice and bitters, and throw in a mint leaf. Return the stick-lid to the mold and freeze for at least 2 hours.
2) Once completely frozen, run water over the outside of the mold and pop out the popsicles. Pour the whiskey (at room temperature) into a tumbler and spike with the popsicle, as if it’s a large ice cube. Garnish with more mint leaf and sip.