Whiskey is often paired with rich flavors like maple and apple cider. And while we love these bold, cold-weather combos, we also appreciate a more delicate blend—like the “Poppy Chulo” from West Hollywood Latin-Asian hotspot Maia. The restaurant's head mixologist Topher Taylor says: “We wanted to pay homage to a bona fide Los Angeles classic cocktail from the mid 20th century, The Brown Derby, while incorporating new elements to bring the drink into the 21st century.” The Rye Ginger Whiskey and Poppy Liqueur—an organic, California-inspired apertive—lends itself to citrus, spice, and floral notes, resulting in one unexpected and delicious holiday party cocktail. Try the recipe below.
1 ¼ oz Reilly's Rock & Rye Ginger Whiskey ($25; liquorama.net)
3/4 oz Grand Poppy Liqueur ($34; grandwinecellar.com)
3/4 oz fresh grapefruit juice
3/4 oz fresh lemon juice
Ginseng-Honey Syrup (recipe below yields 6 oz, which makes 12 cocktails)
3 oz honey (ideally locally sourced)
3 oz hot water
1-2 drops ginseng concentrate ($14/oz; naturesflavors.com)
Grapefruit peel for garnish
1. To make ginseng-honey syrup, combine all ingredients until blended.
2. Shake ingredients and strain into lowball glass full of fresh ice. Garnish with a grapefruit peel.