Wednesday, April 6, 2022

The Tulip Cocktail

The Tulip Cocktail
This spring charmer uses calvados (or applejack)

Ah, spring! Balmy days, chilly nights. And the welcome appearance of flowers.

Like tulips. So the Tulip Cocktail would make a terrific springtime tipple, no?

It’s a wonderful mixture of French calvados (or American applejack), sweet vermouth, apricot liqueur, and lemon juice.

The Tulip Cocktail is a bit on the sweet side, but far from cloying – which makes it a delightful predinner drink. Floral, you might say. 

 

The Tulip Cocktail

Recipe: The Tulip Cocktail

The origins of the Tulip Cocktail are unclear – as is the case with many drinks. A recipe for it appeared in The Savoy Cocktail Book, published in 1930. But we can’t trace its history back any further than that. (The Savoy in question, BTW, was – and is – one of London’s best-known luxury hotels.)

Whatever the back story on this drink, we think you’ll be charmed by its interesting, somewhat complex flavor.

This recipe takes about 5 minutes to prepare and serves 1.

Ingredients

  • 1 ounce calvados (or applejack; see Notes)
  • 1 ounce sweet (Italian) vermouth
  • ½ ounce apricot liqueur (see Notes)
  • ½ ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • lemon twist for garnish (very optional)

 Procedure

  1.  Place all ingredients (except garnish) in a cocktail shaker half filled with ice. Shake vigorously until the contents are well chilled (20 seconds or so).
  2. Strain into a cocktail glass, preferably one that has been chilled. Garnish with a lemon twist, if you wish, and serve.

The Tulip Cocktail
Notes

  • We’ve seen recipes that add a dash or two of orange or peach bitters to this drink. We haven’t tried that, but you might like to.
  • Calvados is French apple brandy, produced in Normandy. It’s most often consumed by itself as an after-dinner drink, but it’s also terrific as an ingredient in cocktails.
  • Applejack is American apple brandy. Its flavor is very similar to calvados, though sometimes a bit less smooth. We think it’s a good substitute for calvados in cocktails. Laird’s is the brand you’re likely to see in the U.S., and we recommend it.
  • Apricot liqueur is, as you might deduce, made with apricots. Marie Brizard’s Apry and Rothman & Winter’s Orchard Apricot are the brands we prefer. Hiram Walker also offers a version, which is cheaper (a good thing) but way too sweet (a bad thing). 
  • BTW, many cocktail recipes call for apricot brandy when they really mean apricot liqueur. True apricot brandy isn’t all that common or easy to find. It’s distilled directly from apricots, while most apricot liqueurs have a neutral spirit as their base (and are flavored with apricots). Adding to the confusion, sometimes even bottles that are labeled “apricot brandy” are actually apricot liqueur. If in doubt, ask the friendly folks at your local liquor store for guidance.
  • Our usual disclaimer: We’re noncommercial and are not compensated for mentioning brands. We recommend only what we like and buy with our own money.

The Tulip Cocktail
Best Buds

“Love the aroma of this drink,” said Mrs. Kitchen Riffs. “Outstanding bouquet.”

“This cocktail is no shrinking violet,” I said. “You might say its flavor rose to the occasion.”

“Putting the petal to the metal with those floral terms, eh?” said Mrs K R.

“Hey, I’m a flower child,” I said. “And this drink is turning me into a tiger lily!”

“I need to nip these jokes in the bud before you become a thorn in my side,” said Mrs K R.

My tulips are sealed.

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54 comments:

Mae Travels said...

Very springlike! Though tulips themselves aren't aromatic, particularly.

best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Mae, tulips aren't but the other flowers in the garden are. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Angie's Recipes said...

Such a beautiful and tempting drink! Perfect for the season, John.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Angie, it's really an excellent drink. :-) Thanks for the comment.

savorthebest said...

This sounds like the perfect cocktail for spring.

Terry at Blue Kitchen said...

Well, this looks and sounds delicious! Very springlike, as your photo suggests. I do like the idea of a dash of bitters to balance the overall sweet profile. Thanks for yet another great cocktail to consider, John.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Dahn, it is! Or any other season, for that matter. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Terry, bitters are almost always a nice addition. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Barb said...

This cocktail sounds as great as it looks, very pretty.

You did what few can do too. You used something that I do not have in my bar John!

I don't have to buy much but right now I want this liqueur and some melon liqueur so I see a trip to the liquor store in my future, thanks for the inspiration!

Merryn said...

This is truly delightful I will have to get some apricot liquer. The dash of bitters is a great idea but I do love a good quality Calvados and this cocktail sounds sublime.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Barb, amazed I could use something you don't have! I keep trying to reduce the variety of stuff I have, but it's hard. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Merryn, Calvados is wonderful, isn't it? As is good apricot liqueur. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Liz That Skinny Chick Can Bake said...

A floral tulip cocktail sounds perfect for the season! I remember my parents making a cocktail with Applejack and now I'm wondering what they were drinking!

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Liz, the Jack Rose is probably the best known applejack cocktail, but there are a few others. Including, of course, this one! :-) Thanks for the comment.

Gerlinde de Broekert said...

Another tasty cocktail, all I need is the apricot liquor . Prost !

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Gerlinde, decent apricot liqueur is rather good all by itself. Worth having. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Pam said...

It looks and sounds lovely.

Ben | Havocinthekitchen said...

Another beautiful and elegant cocktail! Great flavours, and I definitely want to try that apricot liquor, too.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Pam, it is! :-) Thanks for the comment.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Ben, apricot liqueur is worthy stuff. :-) Thanks for the comment.

New Classic r said...

Have all the ingredients. Now I just need to find that perfect glass.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Bernadette, that's a "Nick and Nora" glass -- such an attractive shape, isn't it? Thanks for the comment.

Family Spice said...

What a beautiful cocktail with lots of great flavors. Never heard of apple brandy and I must get some apricot liqueur!

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Laura, you need both of those! :-) Thanks for the comment.

Raymund said...

Spring for you Autumn for us, but definitely can still make this delicious cocktail

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Raymund, the flavor is still good in autumn. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Sherry's Pickings said...

well i've been to the savoy theatre in london which is right next door to the hotel! we were up in the stalls waaaay up in the air. anyway - love your photos, love your cocktail!!

Eva Taylor said...

What a pretty libation, love the colour. The concoction sounds intriguing too. Cheers to spring!
Eva http://kitcheninspirations.wordpress.com/

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Sherry, next time you're there you should visit the hotel's bar -- its history is legendary. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Eva, definitely a drink to cheer on the season. Or any season, for that matter. :-) Thanks for the comment.

David Scott Allen said...

I am really intrigued by this drink, John. Will have to figure out what he uses we can find for the apricot liqueur! (I’m thinking glazing a roasted chicken would be good.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi David, we've used apricot liqueur in a few cocktails, and will be using it in a few more this summer. Like the idea of using it in a glazed chicken! Would work well with pork, too I'd think. (Maybe an apricot sweet and sour pork?). Anyway, thanks for the comment.

gluten Free A_Z Blog said...

I love the idea of a cocktail for spring and what represents spring better than the tulip!! Your drink sounds delicious.

Healthy World Cuisine said...

We are ready to celebrate the spring season. Your beautiful tulip cocktail will certainly be explored this week. Thanks for the tips on apricot liquor vs brandy. Will have to make sure we grab the correct one.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Judee, yup, we always think tulips are the quintessential spring flower. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Bobbi, you'll love this! Really terrific flavor. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Jeff the Chef said...

I love all the stuff you know about alcohol, and I love that you share it all with us!

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Jeff, :-) Thanks for that very kind comment!

speedy70 said...

Assolutanmente da provare, molto invitante, grazie!!!

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Speedy, really good, too. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Food Gal said...

Tulips are among my favorite flowers, so I know I will enjoy this sip. Plus, you had me at apricot liqueur. ;)

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Carolyn, apricot liqueur is good stuff. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Dawn @ Words Of Deliciousness said...

This cocktail sounds perfect for spring. I love the color of this one.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Dawn, the color is nice, isn't it? Flavor is, too! :-) Thanks for the comment.

Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes said...

I always feel smarter after reading your posts LOL and also always want a cocktail after reading them, as well. Love the color on this one!

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Ashley, LOL, sorry about that cocktail craving thing. :-) Thanks for the comment.

Izaa said...

delicious

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Izaa, it is! :-) Thanks for the comment.

Debra Eliotseats said...

Yum. Love all the flavored liquor in this little drink.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Debra, this has quite nice flavor. :-) Thanks for the comment.

bread&salt said...

This is really perfect for this season. Thanks.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi B&S, it's a delightful drink! :-) Thanks for the comment.

Laura Dembowski said...

Apricots are always a favorite so this drink sounds wonderfully springy and fruity.

Kitchen Riffs said...

Hi Laura, the flavor is outstanding! :-) Thanks for the comment.