Anyone deeply entrenched in the booze world knows that sherry has been the cultish drink of affection for the last few years or so.
It’s worshipped on its own, in sherry-heavy bars and restaurants across the U.S. It’s been the subject of a smart new book. And bartenders have been recognizing the singularly diverse power of the fortified wine when poured into a mixing glass.
Made from Spanish grapes, a lone glass of sherry is an invigorating way to cleanse the palate before a meal or wind down after one. There are so many styles of sherry produced that its applications are near-endless. That’s one reason sherry plays so nicely in cocktails.
Perhaps you’ll want to share this classic with your dear sherry-lovin’ nana? The low-alcohol drink is made with only three ingredients: amontillado sherry (said to have a bit of an umami flavor), simple syrup and orange. It’s so simple; it’s foolproof; and it’s quite obvious why this was one of the most popular drinks in the 1800s.
After a long day, all you need is a little something to get your bones moving again—and that’s precisely what this cocktail from San Francisco bartender Jeff Lyon does. A sturdy foundation of bourbon and sweet-but-dry oloroso sherry will pull you to your feet, and Amaro Nonino, orange liqueur and bitters will put a spring in your step.
If the Bone Machine wasn’t quite enough to get you going, this Irish whiskey concoction from New York bartender Pamela Wiznitzer should suffice. Ambre vermouth and Pedro Ximénez sherry add to the drink’s revitalizing power, and bitters add an energizing aroma.
It’s okay to dream about an international adventure even if you can’t get away from the office. This drink provides all the boozy benefits of a trip around Europe—but without the jetlag. Start off with Irish Whiskey, then move southeast to France with a measure of vermouth and, finally, southwest to Spain for a taste of amontillado sherry. Of course, you may want to return to France before returning home with a touch of Grand Marnier.
Of course sherry pairs wonderfully with whiskey, but there’s more to the fortified wine than meets the eye. It even gets along well with south-of-the-border sips like tequila—and if its name is any indication, your future is looking brighter already.
No, no, this isn’t a riff on the brunch-time Bloody Mary. This drink gets its name from a combination of blood-orange oleo saccharum and oloroso sherry. Otherwise very similar to a classic sour with a base of gin and equal parts sweet (oleo saccharum) and sour (lemon juice), the intense flavor of the citrus oils and sugar requires a touch of dry sherry for harmony.