Love can be expressed in so many ways. For some people, gathering together with the people they love is like a well-practiced orchestra getting together to make beautiful music, the whole sonorous miasma sounding so much better than its individual parts.
For other families, it's like heaping mounds of fireworks around some welders on the job. But no matter where you fall (and assuming you're not from one of those all-dry sort of families), at some point during the festivities, you're probably going to need a damn drink. Just because it's cold doesn't mean you can't indulge in the sweet and fruity. In fact, many of the cocktails presented in this article are a wonderful combination of the bright, awakening citrus that's about to come in season from down south and the spicy fall notes familiar to our palates.
So whether you have nosey aunts constantly asking you when you're going to either settle down or get knocked up already, or grating grandfathers asking what the hell your job title means (just say you work with computers and walk away), we have the right cocktail for whatever situation you may encounter. Of course, if you need a break from all the family fun — or "fun" — you can find almost all of these cocktails in some of Indy's best bars. To you and yours, prost!
ZACHARI WILKS // TRINIDAD SOUR
SCENARIO: Your entire family is a loveable bunch of rabble-rousers. They love Jesus, sure, but they also drink a little. And the worst has happened: instead of the normal stagger pattern of arrivals, everyone pulls up in the driveway at the exact same time. Your little hostess-with-the-mostest, one-cocktail-at-a-time Mad Men routine just got a swift kick of reality right in its stylish pants. You're going to need a lot of drinks, and fast.
SOLUTION: Zachari Wilks of Wilks and Wilson's Trinidad Sour, borrowed from Giuseppe Gonzalez, a bartender from NYC. Wilks has had a busy year, with rolling out tons of new product for his brand of cocktail accessories, syrups, and bitters. Wilks was also brought on board to head up the bar program at the new Ruth's Chris steakhouse at the Ironworks building. As for his own personal holiday, Wilks is going to be doing the entertaining and probably a lot of mixing as well. He picked this one because of its Angostura bitters base, which he says makes it taste like "a big glass of Christmas." If you need to make a big batch, just remember the proportions scaled up to parts is 2-2-1.5-1.
1 oz. Angostura bitters
1 oz. Orgeat (a syrup made of almonds, sugarand flower water of some kind)
3/4 oz. Fresh lemon juice
1/2 oz. Rye whiskey (100 proof preferred)
Combine ingredients in a shaker and fill with ice. Shake well to chill; strain into a chilled glass. Or you can have Wilks mix it in person by visiting the new Ruth's Chris on 86th in the Ironworks Building.
Ruth's Chris Steak House2727 E. 86th St.ruthschris.com