Recipes

Glassware just as important as the spirits it holds

A Capitol Bar original, the Luger pairs Larceny bourbon with orange bitters and gingerbread syrup and is served in a classic coupe glass.
A Capitol Bar original, the Luger pairs Larceny bourbon with orange bitters and gingerbread syrup and is served in a classic coupe glass.

Does glassware make the man? It’s always funny to me when I serve a daiquiri or a gimlet to a male guest in a coupe glass and I am met with an odd, awkward silence. This is particularly humorous when a second drink is ordered with a request for a bigger (read: manlier) glass.

To be sure, a coupe glass is pretty dainty, but drinking out of it doesn’t make one any less of a man. After all, it’s just vessel.

There are solid reasons that certain cocktails are served in different glassware. For instance, warm brandy is served in a snifter, which is wider at the bottom so there is more surface area, allowing for more evaporation. The top is narrow so it traps in all that wonderful aroma, as smelling the liquor is an important part of the drinking experience.

A heavy bottomed double rocks glass is a great vessel for an Old Fashioned, particularly when it’s chilled beforehand, as the thick bottom helps keep the liquid cold. It is also large enough to hold a single, giant ice cube.

Wine and beer also have a number of unique glasses that particular varietals are served in, but cocktails have a much wider variety. From champagne flutes, Tiki mugs and martini glasses to rocks and double rocks glasses to highball (or Collins) glasses, the container plays a key role in the presentation and enjoyment of the cocktail. If it wasn’t, then why not just serve martinis in a coffee cup?

What’s really strange about the coupe glass is that it looks as though you’re getting shorted on the amount of liquid, when in fact, it holds the same amount as a rocks glass that has ice in it. Maybe that’s the reason for the awkward silence?

One of my new favorite cocktails, crafted by my compadre in hooch Ryan Hembree for Capitol Bar’s yet-to-be-released signature cocktail menu. This three-ingredient concoction features a homemade gingerbread syrup and a couple of dashes of orange bitters that perfectly complement and soften the Larceny whiskey. Yes, it is served in an elegant and dainty coupe glass, but this is far from a dainty libation.

Kevin Hopper mixes manly and not-so-manly drinks every day at State Street cocktail haven, Capitol Bar.

Luger

2 ounces Larceny whiskey

3/4 ounces Gingerbread Syrup

2 dashes orange bitters

Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass. Add ice and stir for 30 seconds until well-chilled. Strain into a coupe (or martini) glass and serve.

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