We usually aim at making one cocktail a week and start our planning and reconnaissance well in advance. The Avenue seemed like a cinch in comparison to the many recipes in our cocktail bible that call for uncommon and scarce liqueurs. I made the pomegranate grenadine from scratch and we easily found Calvados and Maker’s Mark Bourbon at the BCLDB.
But as predicted by Dr. Cocktail the largest hurdle to making this drink was the unattainability of passion fruit nectar. We searched high and low (and north and south and east and west) but every product we came across was either a “juice blend” with passion fruit listed near the end of the ingredients list, or a passion fruit syrup. Admittedly we could have substituted the syrup for the pomegranate grenadine, an option Ted Haigh provides in the notes to his recipe, but as you may have surmised, D loves a good challenge. After 3 days of searching D proudly arrived home with three whole passion fruit that he obtained at a speciality grocer. I carefully extracted the juice, using a fine sieve and the back of a spoon.
The three fruit produced a whopping ½ cup of juice at a cost of about 15 dollars, making the nectar, ounce for ounce, by far the most expensive ingredient in the drink. The product of the Avenue is a boozy whiskey cocktail with a heavy dose of tart fruitiness from the passion fruit and pomegranate. There is a good amount of apple on the nose as well as smokiness from the Maker’s Mark. On the palate the cocktail is reminiscent of a fresh plum with hints of date, caramel, pineapple, smoke, and oak. Despite the grenadine,
The Avenue is not a sweet cocktail. D says this is a fruit forward drink. He went so far as to declare it his “five alive!” I say perhaps, for a whiskey drinker. For my part this was the first whiskey cocktail from this book that I would be happy to make again. I liked the juxtaposition of the sweet and tart and the way it intermingled with the malt. One final note of caution to anyone choosing to produce the passion fruit nectar from whole fruit: get the rinds out of the house ASAP. I threw ours in the garbage can and woke to an infestation of fruit flies.
- 1 ounce bourbon (we used Maker’s Mark)
- 1 ounce Calvados
- 1 ounce pure passion fruit juice
- 1 dash homemade pomegranate grenadine
- 1 dash orange flower water
Shake over ice. Strain.