I’m excited to host the June 2011 edition of Mixology Monday. I chose niche spirits for the theme. My personal favorite niche spirit is Armagnac, France’s oldest but lesser known brandy. While Cognac focuses more on creating the perfect signature blend, Armagnac celebrates the differences between different vintages. Even from the same producer, different bottlings of Armagnac can vary wildly in flavor which gives the spirit much more room for exploration.
I just got back from a trip to France where I visited the Bas-Armagnac region that is central to Armagnac production. I named my cocktail after the small town I stayed in called Cazaubon. To pair with the Armagnac, I chose Byrrh Grand Quinquina, a French fortified wine. Byrrh is a bit softer than vermouth with heavy wine flavors and just a mild quinine flavor to add bitterness.
- 1 1/2 oz Armagnac (Tariquet 100% Folle Blanche 12 year)
- 3/4 oz Byrrh Grand Quinquina
- 1/2 oz Lemon Juice
- 1/4 oz Apricot Liquor (Marie Brizzard)
Shake, strain and garnish with a lemon zest.