Camping is my favorite summertime activity, provided there are showers, alcohol and a constant fire to keep the bugs away. It is also the perfect time to get creative with what you consume. I once made up the perfect food to put on a stick and cook over the fire: sausage and cheese with Pillsbury croissant dough rolled around it. (Someone must have invented this campfire meal-on-a-stick before me—it is simply too good to not have existed.) Camping in the woods is a feast for my senses. I love the smell of the pine trees and the smoke of the campfire, and I love hearing the forest creatures making what I am sure are pornographic mating calls and dances. I figure the best way to capture that feeling in a drink is to burn something.
In this simple old fashioned, I add a little campfire by with Pine Dram Syrup from Vena’s Fizz House and Sea Smoke Craft Cocktail Bitters from Owl & Whale (both out of Portland). Gunpowder Rye Whiskey from New England Distilling (also Portland) serves as the base for this cocktail, which is garnished with a burned sprig of rosemary.
1/4 ounce Pine Dram Syrup from Vena’s Fizz House
2 sprigs rosemary
2 dashes Sea Smoke Craft Cocktail Bitters from Owl & Whale
2 ounces Gunpowder Rye Whiskey from Maine Craft Distilling
Muddle pine simple syrup, 1 sprig of rosemary and bitters in a rocks glass. Twist the orange peel a little to let some oils out, rub it on the rim of the glass and throw it in the glass along with ice and whiskey, then stir. Light second sprig rosemary on fire and allow the flame to extinguish until smoking, garnish the glass with the smoky rosemary.
Jessie Lacey resides at the heart of downtown Portland with her border collie puppy Josie, making cocktails and trouble.