Adults only: Alcoholic version of classic cookies
Detroit — – It’s Girl Scout cookie time, but with the recent cold spell, it seems prudent to focus on some indulgences that do a pretty good job of warming the insides.
It’s tough to enjoy Do-si-dos, Trefoils and the like when it’s well below freezing out, so it’s time to put an adult spin on some of the classics. Yani Frye, the head bartender at Sugar House on Michigan in Corktown, agreed to apply his skills and interpret the innocent Thin Mint, Samoas and Tagalong into libations strictly for those 21 and older.
“It’s like a puzzle for me,” Frye, 26, said. “The challenging part is you’re taking something that everyone has a knowledge of how they taste. You’re trying to get that balance where it’s not too boozy or out there, but not too sweet, either.”
Frye, a Ferndale resident who has been working at the bar since it opened almost three years ago, is no stranger to challenges involving a drink shaker. Last year he represented the U.S. in the Angostura Global Cocktail Challenge after winning a national competition and earning a $5,000 cash prize and a trip to Trinidad to compete. (He placed fourth. A mixologist from Australia claimed the worldwide title.)
Cooking up the cocktails took a weekend and a lot of trial and error, he said. The Thin Mint involved an atomizer and a dusting of dark chocolate and it came together relatively easily, he said. The Tagalong features homemade peanut syrup and a whole egg.
It was the Samoa that threatened to trip him up. There’s not much call for coconut — a key component in the confection — in specialty cocktails served at Sugar House. The Samoa’s chewy, hearty nature was also a challenge to mimic using liquids. Fry chose a specialized “pebble ice” that keeps its rocky shape when shaken to add a coarseness to the drink.
He plans on putting them on the menu for now. The Thin Mint cocktail and the Samoa will set an individual back 12 bucks. The Tagalog — Frye’s favorite of the three — is $13.
Meanwhile, sales of the actual Girl Scout cookies are on par with last year, said Amy Kubli, a spokeswoman for the Girl Scouts of Southeast Michigan.
“Booth sales are off to a chilly start, yes, but there were definitely troops out there braving the elements this weekend,” she said. “So far, sales this season are right on target with last year’s.”
Thin Mint Cocktail
1/2 ounce Fernet Branca
3/4 ounce Cruzan Black Strap Rum
1/2 ounce VSOP Cognac
1/2 ounce creme de cocoa
3/4 ounce half and half
1/4 ounce simple syrup
Shake with ice, strain into a chilled coupe that has been sprayed with white creme de menthe and dusted with grated dark chocolate. Mint sprig garnish on top.
1 1/2 ounce bourbon
3/4 ounce peanut syrup*
3/8 ounce Pedro Ximenez sherry
3/8 ounce crem de cocoa
3 dashes cocoa nib bitters
1 whole egg
Dry shake, shake again with ice, strain into chilled fizz glass.
Lightly boil no shell 2 1/4 cups peanuts in 3 1/2 cups water.
Strain, add cane sugar equal to 75 percent of the peanuts’ weight. Mix. Add 1 ounce overproof neutral spirit for every 1 cup of syrup.
1 1/2 ounce coconut liqueur*
1 ounce Cachaca
2 dashes allspice bitters
1/2 ounce creme de cocoa
1/4 ounce Lazzaroni Amaro
Shaken with pebble/broken ice. Pour contents from shaker unstrained into a tall glass.
Garnish with grated cinnamon and lightly torched cinnamon bark.
In a blender, blend coconut flesh, (however you can get it, whether it be fresh or store packaged) this will create coconut butter.
Add 15 ounces coconut butter, 1 ounce simple syrup, grated cinnamon, 7 ounces Cruzan white rum, 1 ounce Cachaca and 1 ounce overproof neutral spirit.