There aren’t a lot of shaken cocktails that use scotch. If you’re wondering why, it’s because shaken cocktails tend to have some kind of juice, and the smoky flavor of scotch doesn’t always agree with that. But this drink is an oldie, dating all the way back to the early 20th Century, when it was allegedly invented for the premiere of a silent film called Blood & Sand. According to Wikipedia, that film had “sadomasochistic overtones,” but this juicy, elegant cocktail does not. Probably. It really depends on how you drink it.
How It Tastes: Smoky, Juicy, Strong
Drink If You Like: Rob Roy, Whiskey Sour
The Blood & Sand
- 1.75 ounce blended scotch
- .25 ounce cherry liqueur
- .25 ounce sweet vermouth
- .5 ounce orange juice
- .5 ounce lemon juice
Step One: Lemon Juice
Traditionally, a Blood & Sand doesn’t have lemon juice. But don’t be afraid to change a cocktail. That’s how things improve - and without lemon juice, a Blood & Sand would be about as sweet as a Jolly Rancher. If you don’t believe us, pour yourself a glass of scotch, cherry liqueur, sweet vermouth, and orange juice, and see how that tastes. Once you’ve finished drinking the whole glass, put .5 ounce lemon juice in your shaker.
Step Two: Sweet Vermouth
Where’s your sweet vermouth? According to Rule No. 6, it should be in your fridge. Go find it, and put .25 ounce in your shaker.
Step Three: Cherry Liqueur
The best-known cherry liqueur is called Cherry Heering, but if you have something else, that’s completely fine. Pour .25 ounce in your shaker.
Step Four: Blended Scotch
You might be wondering why we’re telling you to use blended scotch for this cocktail, and you might also be wondering what the f*ck blended scotch is. Let’s answer these questions real quick. First off, blended scotch is a mix of single malt and single grain scotch whiskies. It tends to be less expensive than single malts, and it’s perfect for when you’re making a scotch cocktail and don’t want to use something pricey. That said, if you’re trying to flex on your roommate, by all means, use a single malt. Now, put 1.75 ounce scotch in your shaker.
Step Five: Shake
Give everything a 15-second shake, and pour your cocktail into a chilled coupe. Now give it a taste. There should be a hint of smoke, a touch of acidity, and a “rumor of cherry,” a term we just coined that means “a subtle yet entirely plausible cherry flavor circulating in the background of a cocktail.”