October 7, 2011


One of the best reasons to participate in Creative Culinary’s Friday Happy Hour is the excuse to start on Thursday. After all, there’s testing, retesting, tasting, and reporting on results.

This week’s cocktail makes the most of my favorite new liqueur. ROOT is an alchemy of ingredients – BIrch Bark, Smoked Black Tea, Cinnamon, WIntergreen, Spearmint, Clove, Anise, Orange, Lemon, Nutmeg, Allspice, and Cardamom. It’s an alcoholic version of root beer, and smells amazing.

Mixing ROOT with Rye, in classic Manhattan proportions was the start. Adding the cherry juice was a little love note to cherry coke and balanced the herbal tones perfectly.

And that cherry on the top? Those are my home-canned maraschino cherries. First canned in a light syrup, and after one month, the syrup replaced with Luxardo, the classic maraschino liqueur. These cherries are perfect, organic, and not creepy. (I made another version, too. First canned in a chipotle syrup, then finished in Luxardo. FAB! Caliente!)

Dennis, who loves herbal concoctions, but isn’t much of a drinker, enjoyed a lighter version: ROOT with sparkling water, served in a tall glass, over ice.

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The Rock’n Rye
Makes 1

2 oz. Good Rye Liquor
1 oz ROOT
1/2 oz cherry juice from maraschino cherries
1 maraschino cherry, preferably homemade

Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add the rye, ROOT and cherry juice and shake it up well.
Strain into a very retro highball glass filled with ice.
Garnish with the cherry.
Cheers!

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18 Responses to “Rock’n Rye”

  1. Karla

    This sounds great. I have been enjoying a variety of craft cocktails with rye over the past month. Can’t wait to score some ROOT and give this a try.

    Reply
  2. Val

    I am under the strict rules of the universe to never, ever drink a Manhattan ever again, but I am really intrigued by ROOT. I noted its use in your plum post. Have you found it in a DC area store?

    Reply
    • Cathy

      I won’t ask about that no-Manhattan thing… We all have our stories!
      I ended up ordering ROOT online. I have looked here and there but haven’t found it. My neighborhood (DC) liquor store is usually very willing to order things for me, but none of their distributors carried it. I don’t know about Maryland and VA.

      Reply
      • Val

        Note to any northern VA readers, I just found this at the abc store on Wilson Blvd between Courthouse and Rosslyn, the one in the shopping center with Ray’s The Steaks and the coffee shop.

        Reply
  3. Ann

    Perfect b-day gift for my brother-in-law! Any ideas for artisanal cocktail nibbles to accompany ROOT?

    Reply
  4. Kate

    So you can in syrup first then strain, add Luxardo, and put in the fridge? Or reprocess? And what do you do with that delicious syrup?

    I did cherries in Luxardo syrup this year and while theyre tasty its too much Luxardo – and too expensive. I think next year I’ll make a very light syrup and add a tablespoon or two and that’s it.

    Reply
    • Cathy

      I canned a pint of cherries in syrup. One month later, I poured off the syrup (saved to add to sparkling water) and poured in Luxardo to cover. The cherries just soak in there and have lasted almost a year. The second year. I just added the syrup soaked cherries to the old jar of Luxardo.

      Reply
    • Cathy

      I have been enjoying it in limited quantities! I’m thinking about how it might blend with slivovitz. Your cider syrup looks like a great addition.

      Reply
  5. Paula

    I’m not a rye drinker but my husband enjoys his Manhattans and if I can source some of this Root I’m going to make him this at some point.

    I’m loving the look of your home-made maraschino cherries though and am going to look now to see if you ever posted the full recipe/process to making them.

    Reply
    • Cathy

      That’s great, Danielle! I’ve had it over ice cream and it’s amazing. It’s a great holiday spicy combo.

      Reply
  6. gridsleep

    My mom and gram used to make their own rock’n’rye in a big decanter with rock candy, Rye, cherries, pears, peaches, grapes, what have you. They’d let it set for days and then go nuts. I had a weird childhood.

    Reply

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