Friday, January 28, 2011

Friday Happy Hour: Ward 8

We won't lie to you about this one: we really struggled with the Ward 8. Truly. There was practically a brawl at the editorial board meeting when this week's Friday Happy Hour post came up. Let's put it this way: not everyone agreed that we should go ahead with this post. Why? Well, not because the Ward 8 isn't a classic cocktail, and not because it isn't an old favorite of many. The problem was that some of us think the drink (put bluntly) sucks. Someone mumbled something about it being a "whiskey mai tai." Well! We ended up getting a green light from our Editor in Chief to run the story, so let's get started. Here's a recipe from Fleishmann's to begin with:

Maybe not a Mai Tai, but it does look a little fruity. It's kind of like a sour, maybe. Compare this with a recipe from Oscar Haimo:

A little more whiskey, a little less lemon and grenadine (that's about a teaspoon, there). A little more tart. He adds some soda. Here's another version from Old Crow:

Well, maybe now we are kind of getting into Carmen Miranda territory on this one. It's almost a fruit basket upset. This might be the drink to get your Cosmo-sipping gal pal introduced to whiskey. Maybe. Here's something along the same lines:

Obviously, no one completely agrees with the ingredients. Some include orange juice, others don't, and that makes a pretty big difference in the drink. As far as proportions go, it's all over the map. So, you can tart it up as much as you want -- and slop as much sugar as you want. One point where they're all agreed is that this a drink served on the rocks. Oh, and go ahead and garnish with your fruit basket.

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