We had a super fun little party to celebrate the launch of our first aged product - our Voyageur Cognac-cask finished Aquavit - last weekend out my family friend's bar in Esko, MN. It was such a gorgeous time, with the most wonderful company, fantastic food, and of course lots of aquavit drinks. One of the drinks I made for the evening was a simple aquavit-based take on a Manhattan, which I have called at various times the Kaupang (a large viking settlement that was in southern Norway. Get it, it's like a viking Mahattan, heehee.) or a Scanhattan, which I think has, well, more of a ring to it.
Anyway, it's a, slinky, sophisticated little number that I'm really falling in love with. I find it a particularly nice cooking companion :).
Look, it's a cocktail served up, yet on the rocks. Cocktail joke! Ha!
Now, I never really liked Manhattans until I tried one made with a ration of 2 1/2 oz whiskey to just 3/4 oz of vermouth. Then, suddenly it clicked. The vermouth was there to augment the base spirit, not overpower it. The drink is boozy, for sure, but in a nice, balanced, highly drinkable way. So, that's the ratio I used for this aquavit Manhattan, or Scanhattan, or whatever, too.
the Kaupang - a Scanhattan
- 2 1/2 oz Vikre Voyageur cognac-caske finished Aquavit
- 3/4 oz sweet vermouth - my personal fave with our aquavit is Cocchi Vermouth di Torrino
- 2 dashes of aromatic bitters - we use our house made cherry-hazelnut bitters, but you could use angostura, or whatever is your favorite aromatic bitter
- a boozy cherry for garnish (we use aquavit soaked febree cherries. you could also use brandied cherries, or even a good maraschino cherry)
- Stir all ingredients with ice until well chilled, then strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a boozy cherry.