The Roaring ‘20s are upon us and we have a feeling it is going to be a spirited New Year’s Eve — and by that, we mean bourbon!
Nicole Stipp, Bourbon Women board member and co-owner of Trouble Bar in Louisville, Ky., shares some ideas for ringing in the new decade with a 1920s-themed event.
“Batched Old Fashioneds are a dream,” Stipp said. She suggests pre-mixing syrups — brown sugar simple, Demerara simple and cinnamon-infused demerara are excellent winter options — and bitters beforehand so bartenders can pour those with a guest’s selected bourbon. “Or, partner with a brand and batch the cocktails all together with the whiskeys for speedy bar service.”
To make, simply stir your batches in a mixing glass with ice until well-chilled and pour over fresh ice in a glass. Garnish with an expressed orange peel.
Stipp also suggested two bourbon cocktails that are simple but perfect for the occasion.
Trouble the Winter:
– One bottle Old Bardstown Bottled-In-Bond
– 10 ounces local honey syrup (1 part honey, 2 parts water) for a strong/whiskey forward drink
– 13.5 ounces local honey syrup (1 part honey, 2 parts water) for an easy sip/sweeter version
– 10 dashes Angostura Bitters
– 10 dashes Fee Brothers Orange Bitters
Batch all ingredients in a large Cambro then pour into your service well bottles. Pour 2 ounces into a mixing glass, stir over ice. Strain into a fresh glass, add ice & garnish with an expressed orange peel.
Another fun batch approach is to involve bubbly. It is NYE, for goodness sake!
Make Good Trouble:
– One bottle Johnny Drum
– 14 ounces fig-infused syrup
– 7 ounces pomegranate juice
– House sparkling wine
Batch all ingredients in a large Cambro then pour into your service well bottles. Pour 2 ounces into a shaker with ice & shake vigorously. Strain into a fresh glass (flute if possible) and top with bubbly. Garnish with a fresh fig slice or drop a full cranberry into the bottom of the glass.
For the fig-infused syrup: blend together 1 cup chopped dried figs, 1 cup sugar and 2 cups hot water. Blend together and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Let steep for 2 hours. Strain off fruit and store.
Stipp’s tips for a Roaring ‘20s party with bourbon tasting:
• Pick bourbons from distilleries that were open during Prohibition for a fun tie to the 1920s: Old Forester 1920, Eagle Rare & Evan Williams 100 is a really great flight for this exact occasion.
• DIY tastings or Build Your Own Flight are also fun. Give guests a couple options of whiskeys below 90 proof, a couple of options between 90/100, and a couple of 100+ proof options. Guests can navigate, with your staff’s assistance.
• Always serve ice and water with your tasting; bourbon converts can more easily pick up nuanced flavors with a bit of water and ice to open the whiskey up.