Mx Monday: Broken Spur Cocktail

Darcy O'Neil :: August 7, 2006 7:35 PM

Broken SpurSince the topic this week for Mixology Monday is grape, and I’ve been doing some research on port, I figured whatever drink I made it should include port. With a quick search for port based cocktails, I came across the Broken Spur Cocktail. The best part about this drink is that all of the components are based on some form of grape. How better to do Mixology Monday than to have everything be grape based.

The Broken Spur cocktail is a drink I've never tried, or heard of, prior to this blogging event. But, with this recent interest in port wine it seemed to make sense. Port is made from wine and brandy which both start from grapes. Vermouth is made from wine and Cointreau is a brandy based liqueur, with both obviously being made from grapes. This is the right cocktail at the right time.

Broken Spur CocktailAnyway, I couldn't find much history on this drink. But there are two variations, one using tawny port and the other using white port, gin, an egg yolk, nutmeg and anisette. The one I chose for Mixology Monday is the tawny port one. Some day, once I get a bottle of white port, I'll mix up the alternative recipe using the egg yolk.

Broken Spur Cocktail

1 1/2 oz Port
3/4 oz Sweet Vermouth
1/4 tsp Triple sec

Instructions: Stir all ingredients with ice, strain into a cocktail glass, and serve.

Warres Otima PortThe choice of ingredients for the Broken Spur can make all the difference. You can go cheap, or like me, you can go with premium spirits.  For the port I selected Warres Otima 10 Year Old Port, which is a lighter style of port with a honey, raisin, plum and nut characteristic. Then I used Vya sweet vermouth because it's one of the best vermouths around and has lots of well balanced flavours. Then of course in place of triple sec I used Cointreau for it's complementary orange bitterness and sweetness.

The fist flavour you notice when you stir up a Broken Spur is the sweet vermouth with it's subtle bitterness. The port comes through in the finish with its sweetness. The Cointreau blends with the other two ingredients and you'd miss the Cointreau if you left it out, but you can't really pick it out on its own. I actually used slightly more Cointreau than the recipe indicated, and it still worked out nicely.

This cocktail would make a great digestif or even an aperitif with the subtle bitterness from the vermouth and Cointreau. This cocktail just might make the next cocktail menu revision at the restaurant.

Head on over to the "Martini Lounge" and read Rick's summary for Mixology Monday, the Grape Edition.

Alternative Broken Spur Cocktail

1 oz. White Port
3/4 oz. Gin
3/4 oz. Sweet Vermouth
1 Egg yolk
1/2 tsp. Anisette
Grated Nutmeg  

Mix ingredients in a blender with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Top with some grated nutmeg.

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