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Appropriate Drinks for an Election Night | Great Performances


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Appropriate Drinks for an Election Night
by Jennifer Baughman, Community Manager

Drinking - gulping it down until you can finally see the bottom of the well, the well made of stones thrown during the 2016 election - is likely in the week leading up to Election Day on November 8th (or the 4th, or the 28th, depending on whose interpretation you are following).

We have an app for that – an appropriate recipe for any mood you may be in this month, and the next four years.

I polled my constituency on what they would be serving up and received a handful of clever ideas for a night watching the votes tally across the country. I will respect the voter’s anonymity and not credit the recipes, but my personal favorite comes first:

“How about you serve the Wage Gap? You can use any recipe that you'd like and all you have to do is make sure to fill women's glasses with only 77% as much as you do for the men. Or, you can serve a Manhattan with Canadian Whisky for all of those New Yorkers threatening to move to Canada if Trump wins.”  


Serves 1, just 1 time, and should be repeated in triplicate for 1 person


2 oz. Collingwood 21-Year-Old (go big or go home)

2 oz. sweet vermouth

3 dashes Angostura Bitters

3 Luxardo cherries (not optional)

Combine all ingredients in mixing glass. Add ice and stir to blend. Strain into coupe glass. Garnish with cherry-skewered toothpick.

“Red ‘Bull’ (if you get my meaning).” Oh, we do. If it were me I’d add a little or a lot of Barr Hill Vodka to that and keep on keepin' on, sister.

“Would it be bad to do a drink called The Wall’ with tequila? Or just a case of El Presidente.” I will respectfully refuse to answer the question, and instead slightly pivot to what The Wall might look like - a twist on the sour apple margarita. 


Serves 4, so if you plan on sharing I would again replicate in triplicate

Mixed Salt, Cayenne Pepper, Chili Powder, Ground Cinnamon, Ground Allspice for glass rim

1 Lime

½ cup sliced jalapeno

½ cup each sugar + water

1 cup seasonal sour green apple juice

1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice

¾ cup tequila

1/4 cup triple sec or Grand Marnier

To make the jalapeno simple syrup, in a small pan combine the sugar, water and jalapeno and bring to a simmer for a few minutes. Add the contents to the jar of a blender and puree on high until smooth. Put the syrup in the fridge to chill. When ready, use a lime wedge to rub around the rim of the glass, then dip the rim in the spice mix. Fill the salt rimmed glasses with ice cubes. In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, add simple syrup, sour green apple juice, lime juice, tequila and Grand Marnier. Shake vigorously and pour over the ice. Garnish with lime wedges and jalapeno.

Another colleague had a fantastically fancy idea for what we have dubbed, The Comb Over. The spun sugar garnish on the comb over is where it’s true creativity lies.


1 1/2 ounces orange vodka

1 1/2 ounces blood orange juice (or 1 oz. orange juice, 1/2 oz. lemon juice and a splash of grenadine for color)

1 ounce triple sec

3/4 ounce half n half

1/2-1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Spun Sugar Garnish:

1/2 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons water

For the garnish, cover the floor with newspaper to avoid a mess. Place a clean rolling pin on your kitchen counter so that it hangs over half-way over the edge, and weigh down the other half of the rolling pin with a heavy bowl or tape to keep it in place. Combine the sugar and water in a small, heavy saucepan.  Stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves.  Increase heat to medium and cook (without disturbing) until the caramel reaches a very light amber color of human hair. Brush the sides of the pan with water to prevent crystallization.  Remove caramel from heat immediately.

Allow caramel to cool just until very, very thin wispy hair-like strands form when drizzled with a fork.  Dipping your fork repeatedly into the sugar mixture, whip the strands of hair, I mean sugar, back and forth quickly across the rolling pin to form long, hanging strands.

The trickiest part of making homemade spun sugar is having the caramel at the right temperature.  Too hot and it won’t drizzle properly (and will form large clumps).  Too cold and it won’t drizzle at all. 

Slowly bring the ends together with your hands and form a loose ball. As it is obviously delicate, you should make it at the last minute.

For a bipartisan, fast and friendly offering, we suggest sticking to the blues and reds that are classics:

"The Great Debate, a shot of dueling layers of red and blue." This would be simple in theory, though I offer a warning that the more you get into it, the less clarity you will have.


1 1/3 oz blue curaçao
1 1/3 oz grenadine
1 1/3 oz peach schnapps

This is a layered shot, so each ingredient is poured on top of the previous. Pour the grenadine into a martini glass. Float the peach schnapps on top of the grenadine. Float the blue curaçao on top of the peach schnapps.

Is a shot a little too fast and friendly? We recently served these cocktails for an election themed event, and make a solemn promise of successful reception should you choose to serve them. If not, we will issue a heartfelt apology:


Vodka, Fresh Lime Juice, Simple Syrup, Blue Curaçao, served on the rocks


Vodka, Orange Liqueur, Fresh Lemon Juice, Muddled Amarena Cherries, served up

May the odds be ever in your favor!

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