Grubstreet Los Angeles has a great piece on 21 Colorful Cocktails To Put Some Spring In Your Step. Flipping through the slideshow of libations from some of LA’s best bartenders is guaranteed to make you thirsty, so luckily each drink includes its expertly crafted recipe. Jameson is one of my go-to quaffs, and my admiration of Seven Grand is well documented (here, and here), so I thought I would attempt one of their submissions, The Irish Vandal.
1 3/4 oz Jameson Irish Whiskey
3/4 oz lemon juice
1/2 oz grapefruit juice
3/4 oz simple syrup
1 handful of raspberries
In a shaker, combine Jameson, fresh lemon juice, fresh grapefruit juice, simple syrup, and a handful of muddled raspberries. Shake dry and dump over shaved ice in a Collins glass. Garnish with a zested lemon peel.
I cannot say enough about how tasty this drink is. First though, I should mention that I do not own a shaved ice machine (unfortunately), but I found that placing some ice in a plastic bag and smashing it with a rolling pin made a sort of cracked ice/shaved ice hybrid that worked just fine here. Note that this drink is dry shaken (meaning no ice), so the shaved ice plays an important role in encouraging melting and infusing water into the mix while you sip.
But back to the drink itself. This is a crisp, slightly sweet, tart, and supremely drinkable summer sipper with clear Irish Whiskey undertones. Part of the wow factor for me is that every element is present, necessary, and in perfect balance with each other. There is a brightness and freshness that is enhanced rather than overwhelmed by the sweetness. Moreover, this freshness against the earthy, oaky character of Jameson is a perfect combination. This drink just wouldn’t have the same character using vodka or rum. I might try this recipe with a spicy rye as a variation, but it really is Jameson’s unique flavor that ties this cocktail together.
I highly recommend giving this recipe a try, and I can’t wait for my next trip to Seven Grand to try the real deal.