Some drinks just beg to be reborn. Jotted in aging bar manuals and cookbooks, they slumber for years, maybe trotted out for the occasional "Whatever Happened To...?" experience before slipping back into relative obscurity. Then, for whatever reason, someone starts paying attention to what the drink has to say, and it's like talking to your grandparents and really understanding them for the first time—something clicks, the beauty becomes apparent, and before you know it, the drink is everywhere.
While it might be pushing the matter to say the Fog Cutter was obscure—tiki fiends have been batching them up for years—it's certainly enjoying a new popularity. Victor "Trader Vic" Bergeron first put this drink together decades ago, but now Martin Cate, owner of Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge in Alameda, California is giving it new life. Cate listed this drink as his selection for Food & Wine Cocktails 2008, and is such a fan that he's even registered the drink's name on his car's license plate.
A couple of the Bay Area's best food & drink bloggers have recently lauded the Fog Cutter, and with good reason: it's a delicate, fruity blend of several spirits and juices, topped with an aromatic float of amontillado sherry. Be forewarned, though, it does pack a punch. As Vic wrote of his creation, "Fog Cutter, hell. After two of these, you won't even see the stuff."
About the author: Paul Clarke blogs about cocktails at The Cocktail Chronicles and writes regularly on spirits and cocktails for Imbibe magazine. He lives in Seattle, where he works as a writer and magazine editor.
- Yield:makes 1 cocktail
- Active time: 5 minutes
- Total time:5 minutes
- 2 ounces freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/2 ounce orgeat
- 1 1/2 ounces white rum
- 1/2 ounce gin
- 1/2 ounce brandy
- 1/2 ounce Amontillado sherry
Add everything except sherry to a cocktail shaker and fill with ice. Shake well and strain into an ice-filled highball glass. Carefully pour the sherry on top of the drink; garnish with a sprig of mint.