Monday, March 19, 2007



3 oz. gin
1 oz. cherry brandy (I used Cherry Heering)
1/2 oz. Campari

Combine ingredients with ice in cocktail shaker and shake well. Strain into chilled cocktail glass and garnish with fresh cherry.

This one comes from The Martini Book by Sally Ann Berk. Unfortunately, the book lists no information on the history of the drink, so I have no idea as to it's origins.

The drink itself is a great blend of flavors. The gin lays back and provides a relatively neutral foundation for the brandy & Campari to come forward. Although you initially get the zap of the brandy/Campari combo, you can still detect the gin lurking around the edges.

At first glance, I was a little leery of a drink that used both gin and brandy. I had a vague perception of gin as a "cool" spirit and brandy as "warm", and wondered if they'd work well together. After trying this recipe I think they do work well together, and I'm definitely going to scrounge up more recipes that combine them.

Overall, the Rendevous is one of those drinks where the first sip or two may come across a little harsh, but stay with it- everything smooths out quickly and all the flavors really reveal themselves. Being that all three ingredients contain alcohol, it falls into the "all killer, no filler" category, but it's a very evenly-flavored drink despite it's strength.

A quick note on gin: I'd recommend using one of the crisper-tasting brands (i.e. Bombay, Tanqueray, Broker's) as opposed to a "big" gin like Bluecoat or Hendrick's where the aromatics and infusions are up front- You'll pile too much herbal flavor on top of the already punchy Campari and end up with a drink that's too flowery.


Michael Dietsch said...

Funny you should mention that bit about which gins pair well with Campari. I've been experimenting with Aviation, which my wife and I love in an aviation (natch) or a martini.

But last night's Negroni? No. For the reasons you say, Aviation doesn't seem to play well with Campari. My favorite gin for a Negroni remains Plymouth.

Dr. Bamboo said...

Michael, I'd LOVE to get ahold of some Aviation. I keep hearing great things about it, but I've never seen it anywhere around here.

The search goes on...

Anonymous said...

The simplicity of the recipe appeals a lot to a lazy h0r like me. I may have to pick up some ingredients (well, the gin I have, OF's a Lazy H0r Essential) and give it a whirl!

Anonymous said...

Hmmm ... the recipe I've seen for the Rendezvous uses Kirschwasser (cherry eau-de-vie), not Heering, which is a huge difference in flavor. (And a ratio of 3:1:1)

Unless you really love bitter cocktails (I do!), I would recommend using a sweeter German Kirsch like Schladerer, rather than drier American ones like Clear Creek or St. George's Aqua Perfecta (both of which I love, especially the latter).

Still, nice to see one of my favorite cocktails highlighted, thanks!

Dr. Bamboo said...

Chasa- you can get both the brandy and the Campari at the Monroeville's one-stop shopping for lazy h0rs!

DougP- thanks for the tip on the Kirsch! I'll give it a shot. And since the Rendevous is one of your favorites, do you happen to have any info on it's history? I couldn't really find much.

Kaiser Penguin said...


Let me know if you find any kirchwasser in PA that isn't simply chemicals + grain alcohol. :)

I've actually been thinking about putting in an SLO for some, but I have a bad feeling they are going to hit me with the six bottle minimum. Not sure I could use that much in my lifetime.

erik.ellestad said...

Wow, with Kirsch that puppy comes out to 4 oz of 80+ proof booze!


Beware of the LeRoux Kirschwasser. It is just awful stuff. I don't know what chemicals it exactly involves. My suspicion is cherry cough syrup and paint thinner.

Dr. Bamboo said...

The only brand of Kirschwasser I've seen locally is DeKuyper's. Since I have nothing to compare it to, I have no idea where it falls on the good/bad scale.

That's why I rely on you experts showing up in my comments section!

Kaiser Penguin said...

Hah! Kirsch doesn't taste much better :) (ducks barrage of arrows)