In the half-year or so that I’ve been trying out cocktails, I’ve found that they can take various forms.
For instance, there’s what you could call the martini-type cocktails, where a base spirit like gin or vodka is augmented with another spirit or liqueur. They’re potent and can have interesting, complex flavours. As well as the Martini, the Negroni, the Manhattan and the Caruso also fit this category.
Then there are cocktails that add fruit juice (and sometimes other ingredients) to the base spirit. They’re less strong and possibly more refreshing than the martini-types. The classic example is the Screwdriver (which I’ve not done yet), but there’s also the Harvey Wallbanger, the Bloody Mary/Caesar and the Tom Collins.
Then there’s the Bronx, which is a combination of the two types.
This is effectively a Martini with red vermouth and orange juice added. It was invented in the early 1900’s by Johnny Solon, bartender at the original Waldorf-Astoria Hotel (on the site now occupied by the Empire State Building).
According to my cocktail manual (and Wikipedia) Johnny was challenged to make a new cocktail, and the Bronx was the result. Apparently the name came from the Bronx Zoo, which Johnny had visited a few days earlier and where he saw many creatures he’d never known of before. To him, his new cocktail was another newly discovered creature.
1 1/2 msr gin
3/4 msr sweet red vermouth
3/4 msr dry vermouth
3/4 msr orange juice
Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with lots of ice, shake and pour into cocktail glasses.
It’s strong, but not nearly as orange-y as you’d expect from its colour – it’s more herbal from the vermouths with some sweetness and tangyness from the orange juice.