If this year's presidential race hasn't made you want to shotgun an IPA at full speed, then you haven't been paying attention. Even the most reserved of us have probably reached for the bottle more than we'd like to admit. But Election Night is nearly upon us, and to toast the end of the shit show as the total counts come in, we're going to need some drinks. Strong ones. Lots of them.
We commissioned a bartender to mix up some presidential-race-inspired cocktails that turn Donald Trump's off-color remarks into an excuse to have a stiff drink or two (or seven, we're not judging). To hear how to make the Bad Hombre and the Nasty Woman, plus an interview with the Obama administration's chef Sam Kass, listen to our latest episode of Bite below. The cocktail segment begins at 1:00.
Nicky Beyries is the bar manager at Foreign Cinema and Laszlo in San Francisco. When creating these political party favors for us, she cleverly chose spirits made by women and people of color (like Square One vodka and Ilegal mezcal). She also avoided predictable choices, like a cosmo for the Nasty Woman.
"I get really tired as a female bartender who faces a lot of sexism—not only from guests, but from the industry and from liquor companies themselves—of the idea that for it to be womanly it has to be a certain way or a certain color," Beyries told me. "There's nothing more feminine about something because it's dyed pink."
If you can't track down the products Beyries recommends, our own Tom Philpott has another take on the Bad Hombre, with ingredients you just might have on hand.
So without further ado, here are the recipes for your Election Night imbibing pleasure. Cheers!
Stir well over ice, pour into a cocktail glass, garnish with a small chili de arbol balanced on the rim and a sprinkling of fresh cinnamon.
3 Thai basil leaves
1/2 ounce simple syrup
3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice
2 ounces Square One basil vodka
Shake, double strain into a glass, and top with about 1.5 ounces Fever-Tree Bitter Lemon soda. Garnish with a spring of Thai basil.
Don't have these fancy ingredients at home? Try Tom Philpott's out-of-the-cabinet Bad Hombre:
4 ounces mezcal
2 ounces dry vermouth
2 splashes Cointreau
2-4 dashes of orange bitters
A pinch of chipotle powder (or smoked hot paprika)
A teaspoon each of salt and chipotle powder (or smoked hot paprika), mixed and laid out on a small plate
Garnish: two quarter orange slices, dusted on both sides with salt and chipotle powder.
Wipe the edges of two coupe glasses with an orange slice to moisten. Dip them into the salt-powder mixture to line the edge.
Combine the mezcal, vermouth, Cointreau, a pinch of chipotle powder, and the bitters in a jar. Add ice cubes, stir vigorously, and strain into the coupes. Garnish with the oranges slices. Serves two.
And just in case you missed the internet frenzy over Trump's "bad hombre" and "nasty woman" comments, here's a roundup of the best memes.