101 Best New Cocktails: Killer Queen by Zachary Nelson, The Hammer Bar, Anaheim, CA, USA

by Gaz Regan · Thursday, October 15th, 2015 · 101 Best New Cocktails, 101 Best New Cocktails 2015

Killer Queen

Zachary Nelson, The Hammer Bar, Anaheim, CA, USA

“This was another one of those on-the-fly creations. A customer wanted something with mezcal that was spicy yet refreshing. I had been playing with Ancho Reyes/mezcal combos, and this one really hit the spot. The passionfruit syrup adds a level of unparalleled refreshment, while the chocolate-chile bitters provide just the right kind of spice to keep you coming back for more. Our bar manager, Lucie Wood, makes the passionfruit syrup and house chocolate-chile bitters.” Zachary Nelson

Killer Queen30 ml (1 oz) Illegal Mezcal Joven

30 ml (1 oz) Ancho Reyes

22.5 ml (.75 oz) Passionfruit Syrup*

22.5 ml (.75 oz) fresh lime juice

3 dashes Ghost Chile-Cacao Bitters**

1 dried chile, as garnish

Shake over ice and double-strain into highball glass over crushed ice. Add the garnish.

*Passionfruit Syrup: Make a 2:1 simple syrup with 450 g (2 cups) granulated sugar and 240 ml (1 cup) water (hot method). When cooled, add 240 ml (1 cup) shelf-stable passionfruit juice concentrate (such as Maguary, available on Amazon or Latin grocery stores). Pour into a 750-ml bottle and store in the refrigerator.

**Ghost Chile-Cacao Bitters: Combine 240 ml (1 cup) flavorful 151-proof rum (such as Gosling’s 151 or Hamilton 151 Jamaican), 1 pitted and quartered Medjool date, and 1/4 cup cacao nibs in a glass jar. Cover and allow to infuse for 7 days. Add 1/2 cinnamon stick, 1 allspice berry, and 1 teaspoon black walnut leaf. Cover and infuse for 24 hours. Strain and add 2 quartered ghost chiles (use gloves!). Infuse for 30 minutes to 1 hour (to taste). Remove the chiles, strain through a coffee filter, and bottle. Makes about 240 ml (1 cup). Alternatively you can use 2 dashes Bitter Truth Chocolate bitters plus 2 to 3 dashes Scrappy’s Habanero Firewater Cocktail bitters.

gaz sez: F***in’ brilliant. I bet this drink will sell over and over again in any bar in the world. Nicely done, Zachary!


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