Over the past year or so, it seems that every fancy bar or ambitious restaurant cocktail list has included a barrel-aged cocktail: a cocktail mixed and ready to drink, but instead poured into a mini (or real big) barrel to mellow and take on a little oak flavor. Jeffrey Morgenthaler's method has spread to Chicago and San Francisco, Boston and New York, so of course the DIYers wanted to get in on the action.
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Barrel-aged cocktails are all the rage, so it would make sense that one of the hottest restaurants in America, Top-Chef winner and Food & Wine Best New Chef Stephanie Izard's Girl and the Goat, would be jumping on the bandwagon. But, with mixologist Ben Schiller at the helm, simply following a trend isn't enough. It has to be done right. We got a chance to help Schiller prepare one of the first batches of G&TG's barrel-aged Manhattans.
Hugh Reynolds of Temple Bar in Cambridge uncorked his first batch of Negronis in October. Into the cask goes gin, campari, and sweet vermouth. Over a couple of weeks the cocktail transforms into a rounder, smoother, extremely drinkable version of itself.