The 7&7 is a classic, but strange, highball. It’s easy to make, easy to remember and, frankly, not especially compelling to drink. Though it has its diehard enthusiasts, for many it comes off as cloying and artificial tasting. However, some bartenders have used it as a base for inspiration, improving upon the formula with different whiskeys and mixers. This version comes from bartender Nick Bennett, the beverage director at New York City bar Porchlight, which gives the variation its name. It’s considerably more complicated than its two-ingredient origin—it involves no fewer than five whiskeys, a homemade syrup and the use of a CO2 carbonator—but it’s worth making to see what heights a 7&7 can aspire to.
In the Porchlight 7&7 Bennett combines Mellow Corn, Dickel no. 12 Tennessee Sour Mash, Candian Club Rye, Old Overholt and Cobalt whiskeys to imitate Seagram’s blended style and adds a touch of Cointreau to play up the drink’s citrus qualities. House citrus syrup and black tea take the place of 7UP, and then Bennett kegs and carbonates the drink. Because of the small proportions for ingredients like the Corsair Triple Smoke American malt whiskey, which only gets an eighth of an ounce added, as well as the forced carbonation, it’s advisable to make this drink in large batches and then portion it out to individual glasses or keep in the fridge.
- 1/2 ounce George Dickel Superior No. 12 Tennessee whiskey
- 1/2 ounce Old Overholt straight rye whiskey
- 3/8 ounce Canadian Club rye whiskey
- 3/8 ounce Mellow Corn whiskey
- 1/8 ounce Corsair Triple Smoke American malt whiskey
- 1/4 ounce Cointreau
- 1/4 ounce black tea (chilled)
- 1 ounce citrus syrup*
- 2 1/2 ounces pebble ice
- Garnish: lime wedge
Add each of the whiskeys, the Cointreau, black tea and citrus syrup into a Collins or tall stemmed glass over ice and chill.
Carbonate with a CO2 carbonator.
Garnish with a lime wedge.
*Citrus syrup: Combine 1/8 ounce lemon zest, 1/8 ounce lime zest, 12 1/2 ounces sugar, 3/8 ounce chopped ginger, a few grains of kosher salt, 12 1/2 ounces water, 5 grams citric acid and 2 1/2 grams malic acid in a small saucepan and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add 1/2 ounce lime juice and 1/2 ounce lemon juice, then let cool. Strain through a fine-mesh strainer and store, covered, in the refrigerator. Yields 1/2 quart.