Mix together Sazerac 18-year old rye whiskey, Carpano Antica, and Fee’s Barrel-aged Bitters and you have one of the best Manhattan’s ever conceived. But if any of you are like me, such elixirs are saved for special occasions. Now whip up one with Old Overholt, Martini and Rossi, and Fee’s regular aromatic bitters. Is it as good? No way. Is it still delicious while not requiring me to dish out half of my monthly paycheck? Indeed.
This post is nearly entirely ripped from an eGullet thread, but I found it beyond fascinating and thought I could get a lot of good tips from everyone.
Ever since I started my cocktail journey, I’ve tried to find the best buys for nearly all the spirits when it comes to mixing. Here are my favorites. With some exceptions, these are all easily obtainable in Pennsylvania, where it can be hard to find brands that are not consumed by the masses. You know, unless you’re willing to place a special order with a 12 bottle minimum.
I kept the list short and just covered the basics so that you don’t have to spend two hours inventorying your liquor collection. Not that that wouldn’t be fun.
KP’s House Brands
- Gin: Plymouth and Tanqueray – $25.99 and $23.99
- Dry Vermouth: Noilly Prat – $9.49
- Sweet Vermouth: Martini and Rossi
- Gold Puerto Rican Rum: Bacardi 8 – $22.99
- Light Puerto Rican Rum: Brugal or Cruzan – $12.19 or $12.49
- Dark Jamaican Rum: Gosling’s – $14.99
- Demerara Rum: Lemon Hart 80 and 151-proof – $20.99 and $26.99 (sadly, each of these requires a 12 bottle minimum purchase! Not that I won’t use them up …)
- Tequila: Sauza Hornitos – $26.99
- Rye: Old Overholt (sadly this is no longer easily available in PA. I’m stuck with Wild Turkey. – $26.09
- Bourbon: Buffalo Trace – $19.99
- Blended Scotch: Famous Grouse – $23.49
- Cognac: Chalfonte or Salignac – $22.49 or $17.99
- Orange Curacao / Triple Sec: Marie Brizard Orange Curacao, Harlequin, Cointreau – $27.99, not available in PA, $30.99
- Pastis: Herbsaint – $26.69
- What are everyone’s house brands?