The Button Hook Cocktail

Jul 29, 2017

The Button Hook Cocktail will officially be our last recipe in the “B” section of Mr. Boston’s 1935 – YAY!

It took roughly 100 blog entries to get this far, and there is more than 20 times further yet to go. I’m just proud to say that I’ve made it here without scrapping the idea.

It’s hard to know whether or not my posts are reaching anyone. Sometimes it feels like I’m doing this for my own enjoyment. Either way, this experiment of mine has been a huge educational experience for me. I can only hope others will stumble onto my ramblings and find value in it someday.

Being comprised of equal parts Creme de Menthe, Apricot Nectar, Absinthe and Brandy; the Button Hook sounded very strange indeed. While I enjoy my Absinthe with mint, I was not sold on the idea of adding a fruit forward Apricot to the mix.

Absinthe in particular is a very strong flavor profile. My initial assumption was that the licorice notes would overshadow the fruit liquors and take over the drink. I also wondered how “diluting” the 169 proof Absinthe with lower proof spirits would affect the louching.

All of the alcohol had evaporated from our batch of homemade Creme de Menthe. In order to remedy the situation, we added an ounce of Gem Clear (190 proof Vodka) and an ounce of 80 proof Vodka to the jar of moist mint leaves and sugar. It didn’t take long to infuse the high proof spirit and we were on our way.

Vintage Buttonhook

I’d never realized there was once a tool to help fasten a tricky button. Had you?

The recipe calls for 1/4 of each ingredient. Naturally I deduced this to mean a little over a third of an ounce. Without water, 1/3 of an ounce of Absinthe is ALOT. Seriously, there is a reason most cocktails only add a dash unless the spirit is diluted back with a non-alcoholic mixer.

After mixing the lot together without ice, I tried to give it a taste test. The aroma could peel paint off a building, ethanol overload. Once I figured out the rhythm of holding my breath as I took a sip, the taste wasn’t horrible. I was surprised that the Apricot stood out as much as it did. The mint took the lead, followed by the grassy notes of the Absinthe, the Apricot and then the Anise. I didn’t really get much in the way of Brandy at all.

Button Hook Cocktail

I’m not sure if you can tell here or not but the color of this drink was almost as unpleasant as the taste.

I assumed that the flavor would be better after icing the drink as instructed. I was wrong! I don’t know why but for some reason the Button Hook Cocktail tastes stronger to me chilled. Not in a good way either 🙁 In fact, this drink officially ranks up there with other Mr. Boston’s fair that I simple could not finish. Ryan took another for the team.

Sadly, the “B” section of this vintage cocktail book ended as it started. Thankfully the middle showed off some keepers. Here’s to the next chapter… Cheers!