Libations

Cocktail: The Blood and Sand

David McCowan

April 24 2013 - 1:00 PM

A simple glass of Scotch neat or on the rocks is a beautiful, beautiful thing full of complexity and subtlety, so why go mucking up the good stuff by putting it in a cocktail?

Normally, we’d agree. Scotch’s assertive nature means it’s usually a poor match for, well, most everything. But a few exceptions exist. And perhaps our favorite exception is the Blood and Sand, a drink so bizarre-looking on paper that it might just work.

Named after the 1922 Rudy Valentino flick of the same name, the Blood and Sand first appeared in print in Harry Cradock’s seminal The Savoy Cocktail Book of 1930. There, the recipe called for equal parts Scotch, orange juice, cherry brandy and sweet vermouth which produces an interesting, if overly sweet version. Today’s more balance-minded bartenders bend the ratio a bit in favor of the Scotch, but we promise not to tell your dentist about your sweet-tooth if you opt to go traditional.

This drink is easy-going. Matching assertive flavor for assertive flavor means that no one component dominates and even the most ardent brown spirits avoiders can be swayed.

Take a look at our recipe here and mix one up today.

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