Excellia Reposado ($34) is aged in Sauterne and cognac barrels for nine months and later blended for a balanced and complex finish. Perfect for Palomas.
Even if gin isn’t your thing, you’ll warm up to G’Vine Floraison ($37), a clean, floral variety from France. Try it in a White Negroni.
For a sweet Manhattan or martini, try the rich Punt e Mes ($24). For dry versions, use the light Dolin Dry ($18). Both can also hold their own solo over ice.
You’ll need white rum for tropical drinks like Mojitos and daiquiris. Try aged rum for a twist on an old-fashioned. Aged for 12 years, Diplomático’s Reserva Exclusiva ($46) gives off light, fruity notes of banana and coconut.
The base for an old-fashioned and Southern favorites like the mint julep and Sazerac. Try Buffalo Trace bourbon ($27) for a sweet touch or Rittenhouse Straight Rye Whiskey ($30) for spice.
To add more dimension. Green Chartreuse ($76) is herbaceous in the Last Word. Suze (rhymes with “booze,” $30) adds a quirky bitterness to a Suze and Tonic. Varnelli Amaro ($57) gives a mild honey sweetness in a Little Italy.
The salt and pepper of cocktails. A dash of Angostura (for a hint of baking spice) or Regans’ (for citrus and heat) will perk up a Manhattan or old-fashioned; Peychaud’s adds a black cherry vibe to a Sazerac. (All available from $11 to $16.)
Online exclusive: Three classic cocktail recipes from Fox
2 ounces aged spirits (whiskey, rum, or even brandy)
2 dashes Angostura bitters
2 dashes Regan’s orange bitters
1 bar spoon simple syrup
Combine ingredients in a mixing glass. Add ice and stir for 15 to 30 seconds. Strain into a rocks glass with one large ice cube. Garnish with a large twist of both lemon and orange (or lime if using rum).
2 ounces Diplomático Blanco
3/4 ounce fresh-squeezed lime
3/4 ounce simple syrup
Shake with ice and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a lime wheel.
1 ounce G’Vine Floraison
1 ounce Suze
1 ounce Cocchi Americano vermouth
Combine ingredients over ice. Stir and strain into a rocks glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish with an orange twist.
All bottles available at H&F Bottle Shop.
This article originally appeared in our April 2015 issue.