The Third in its Series of Themed Menus.
After traveling down Route 66 and across the Silk Road in their first two Roads & Travel-themed menus, Pouring Ribbons debuted their Moody Authors menu on October 3, 2016. The award-winning cocktail bar in New York City’s East Village is proud to unveil a literary bent in the third iteration of its innovative thematic approach to menu creation.
Transportive. Ethereal. Bewitching. Enlightening. Transformative. There are countless adjectives used to describe the immense power that the written word can have on a person. When we sit down with a book, surely we appear passive and motionless to those around us. But a peek inside our minds reveals the powerful energies unleashed by a gripping narrative- new worlds to construct, strangers to encounter, ruminations to ponder and the vastness of our own memories to color those experiences uniquely for each of us.
The written word is not, however, our only avenue to such leaps of fancy and bouts of contemplation. For what of the stories to be found within a glass? The distiller’s art of rendering the true essence of their base product, augmented by the bartender’s skillful manipulation of these complex ingredients into cocktails that continue to change and unfold. Just like a great book, a truly memorable cocktail has a narrative arc that structures our enjoyment of it.
An idea nurtured by Joaquín Simó, partner and head bartender, the Moody Authors menu was brought to life through a collaborative effort involving the entire staff. Every member of the Pouring Ribbons team contributed thought-provoking original recipes to the menu.
The Pouring Ribbons staff members chose the fertile ground of Gothic literature as their starting point and followed its creeping tendrils through time as it influenced categories as diverse as detective novels, Penny Dreadful serials, Romantic poetry, the writings of the Naturalists, pulp fiction, dystopian sci-fi and even contemporary pop music. From Bram Stoker’s iconic vampire to Grimm’s fairy tales to Morrissey’s mournful lyrics, Joaquín and his staff found ample room for inspiration in these contemplative writings.
A few examples from the menu are below. Stop in to give these cocktails a try or mix them up at home.
Lovage Will Tear Us Apart
This savory riff on a Hyde/Queens Park Swizzle pairs the celery flavor of lovage with the vegetal pepperiness of tequila. The Riesling syrup adds floral and mineral notes, while the Peychaud’s poured over the top adds a vivid pop of color while echoing the vanilla and anise notes from the Galliano. The name is a gleefully terrible pun on the Joy Division song “Love Will Tear Us Apart,” which was written in Aug 1979 but not released until the month after singer/lyricist Ian Curtis’ May 1980 suicide. It’s also the inscription on his tombstone.
- 3/4 oz. El Tesoro Blanco Tequila
- 3/4 oz. Cimarron Tequila
- 1/4 oz. Galliano L’Autentico
- 3/4 oz. Riesling Syrup*
- 3/4 oz. Lemon Juice
- 6-8 Lovage Leaves
Garnish: Lovage sprigs, spanked & inserted. Corked 1/2 oz. vial of Peychaud’s Apertivo + Peychaud’s bitters poured over top.
A reference to Anthony Burgess’ 1962 dystopian novel, A Clockwork Orange and the notorious Korova Milkbar’s “Moloko”, this clarified milk punch brings out comforting notes of butterscotch and baking spices with the herbal after-bite of absinthe.
- 1 1/2 oz. El Dorado Spiced Rum
- 1/2 oz. Yaguara Ouro Cachaca
- 1 1/2 oz. Lady Grey Tea
- 1/2 oz. Orange Cordial
- 1/4 oz. Cinnamon Syrup
- 1/2 oz. Lemon Juice
- 1 tsp. Cane Syrup
Ice: 2 Kold Draft Cubes
Garnish: Allspice powder, black and white paper straw, orange twist around straw.
Add to glass: 2 drops Copper and King’s Citrus Absinthe.
Using M.G. Lewis’ short story The Wood Demon as inspiration, this Scotch-spiked riff on a rum Manhattan is based around the idea of a haunted stump serving as a portal to the underworld. Barbancourt’s grassiness serves as the forest setting, and the smoke of the Lapsang tea infusion lends a hellish implication. The combination of the stone and tropical fruits of the scotch and rum, paired with the vanilla and baking spice of the Mole bitters is meant to represent temptation. The drink’s flavor appeals to lovers of robust smoke, and serve as a delicious challenge for those who enjoy adventurous riffs on Manhattans.
- 1 oz. Lapsang Tea-Infused Barbancourt 4yr Rum
- 1/2 oz. Johnnie Walker Black Scotch
- 1/4 oz. Hamilton Jamaican Black Rum
- 3/4 oz. Bonal
- 1/4 oz. Vanilla Syrup
- 1 dash Mole Bitters
Glass: Stump Mug
Corpse Reviver #Blue
An azure-tinted riff on a classic cocktail. The name is pretty self-evident here. Popularized by the 1930 Savoy Cocktail Book by Harry Craddock, this classic cocktail is part of a succession of “Corpse Revivers” originally devised as a hangover cure. It’s easy to love and easy to drink: lemony, dry (but not too dry) and ever so subtly deepened by absinthe. He wrote, “To be taken before 11 a.m., or whenever steam and energy are needed.” Enjoy, but keep Craddock’s warning in mind, “Four of these taken in swift succession will quickly unrevive the corpse again.”
- 3/4 oz. Aviation Gin
- 3/4 oz. Cocchi Americano Vermouth
- 3/4 oz. Lemon Juice
- 3/4 oz. Giffard Blue Curaçao
- 1 dash Copper & Kings Lavender Absinthe
Garnish: Spray C&K Lavender absinthe tableside with perfume atomizer.
In the original Grimms’ Fairy Tale, “Little Snow White,” Snow White’s evil step mother, the queen, orders the Huntsman to take young Snow White to the forest to murder her because she is jealous of Snow White’s beauty. It is an apple brandy Manhattan seasoned with Curaçao and Nocino. The garnish is meant to symbolize the queen’s red-hot iron shoes.
- 1 3/4 oz. Laird’s Apple Brandy
- 1/2 oz. Cocchi Torino Sweet Vermouth
- 1/4 oz. Pierre Ferrand Dry Curacao
- 1/4 oz. Don Ciccio & Figli Nocino
- 1 dash Angostura Bitters
- 1 dash Orange Bitters
Garnish: Smoking Clove-Studded Apple Fan.
Pouring Ribbons Creative Director Amanda Elder conceived and designed the physical menu; its visual representation in paper and ink. Ms. Elder utilizes the rich and textured inner covers of antique books as her inspiration for laying out the diverse drink selection. Influences of which are also found in the bar space, providing a gorgeous background in a display of book covers and dried flowers.
A spirited contemplation, the Moody Authors menu remains true to Pouring Ribbons’ core mission and ethos: A great cocktail should have a creative body that delights and satisfies its imbiber while remaining intriguing enough to warrant ordering another round.
Pouring Ribbons is located at 225 Avenue B, 2nd Floor, NYC (Between 13th & 14th Streets) and is open daily from 6pm – 2am.
For more information or to book a tasting, call 917-656-6788 or email Info@PouringRibbons.com.