The Booze Chain

The San Francisco Booze Chain: Vol. 1
One link the chain: Comstock Saloon’s Pisco Punch

Welcome to the inaugural links in the S.F. Booze Chain. Much like The Food Chain — which is on a bit of a hiatus at present — in which Grub Street asks a chef for a dish he or she recently enjoyed, and then we follow the trail of chefs loving other chefs’ dishes ad infinitum, we’ve asked a few of the city’s better mixologists for cocktails they’re loving around town right now. We start with a drink we’ve been digging lately, Brooke Arthur’s Iceberg Daiquiri at Wo Hing General Store, and then let Brooke take it from there 

Wo Hing General Store 584 Valencia Street   One of our favorite drinks in recent weeks is this surprisingly complex member of the daiquri family created by Brooke Arthur.   1 1/2 oz. Barbancourt rhum, unaged 3/4 oz. fresh grapefruit juice 3/4 oz. fresh lime juice 1/4 oz. Luxardo maraschino liqueur 1/2 oz. house vanilla syrup*   Shake all ingredients vigorously with ice. Double-strain into a coupe glass and garnish with a brandied cherry.   *To make vanilla syrup, scrape four vanilla beans into 1 cup sugar, add two cups water, bring to a boil and strain.
Bar Agricole 355 11th Street   Brooke’s pick comes from the Savoy Cocktail Book, via bar star Thad Vogler. Brooke says, “The Moonraker Cocktail has all the parts of a cocktail that I love, it’s simple, a perfect balance of spirit and sugar, and still has that light aperitif element that I look for. It’s a good beginning or ending to every experience I have at Bar Agricole.”   1 oz. brandy 1 oz. peach whiskey 1 oz. white Cocchi Americano 2 dash absinthe   Stir with ice and strain into a stemmed cocktail glass.
Slanted Door 1 Ferry Building   Thad says, “The drink that I love right now is the Singapore Sling that Erik Adkins is doing at Slanted Door. It’s really indicative of what Erik does the best.  He meticulously vets tropical classics and makes them fresh and delicious rather than the artificial monstrosities people have come to know them as.”   1/2 oz. lime juice 1/4 oz. Cointreau 1/4 oz. Benedictine 1/2 oz. Cherry Heering 1 1/2 oz. London dry gin (Beefeater) 1 1/2 oz. fresh pressed pineapple juice 2 dashes of Angostura bitters   Shake and strain, served long over ice.
Comstock Saloon 155 Columbus Avenue   Erik says, “My pick is the Pisco Punch at Comstock Saloon.  It’s a perfectly balanced drink.  Enjoying one in the beautiful vintage glassware at Comstock’s 19th century-style saloon makes me feel like I am back to the days of the Barbary Coast.”   2 oz. Campo de Encanto Pisco 1 oz. Small Hands Pineapple Gum Syrup 3/4 oz. fresh lemon juice 4 dashes Nichol Juice (a proprietary tincture of kaffir lime leaf and some secret ingredients)   Shake like hell, strain into a chilled punch glass and garnish with a lemon twist.
Beretta 1199 Valencia Street   Comstock Saloon’s Jonny Raglin says, “My favorite cocktail in this city is the Acadian at Beretta.  Vince and Ryan are both good friends of mine who sling drinks there.  That drink rocks!  It has bold ingredients that play very well together which I think is the mark of a fantastic beverage.”   2 oz. rye whiskey 5 dashes absinthe 1 oz. honey solution (2:1 honey and hot water cooked down) 1 oz. lemon juice 3/4 oz. sloe gin 1 full sprig of rosemary   Shake all ingredients together and double-strain into a tall glass over ice. Garnish with rosemary sprig.
The San Francisco Booze Chain: Vol. 1