The 67th Emmy Awards show is this Sunday and if you were glued to your TV this year, you’re not going to want to miss it. Everyone’s speculating whether this will be the year where Jon Hamm finally gets recognized for his stint in AMC’s Mad Men, or if Game of Thrones will once again steal his thunder (it certainly has the potential to with 24 nominations). So in honor of the Emmys this year, we asked bartenders around town to suggest the perfect cocktails to represent each of the favorite shows in the Drama Series category, which has the most buzzed about TV shows.
Bestia’s The Company Man: Dry Curacao, Amaro Montenegro, Blanc Vermouth, Old Tom Gin, Peychaud’s Bitters, Flamed Grapefruit Twist. Barman Jeremy Simpson recommends his play on a classic gin martini. Record the show and then watch “it on your lunch break while eating oysters and drinking about five of these. Then go back to work and do your best drunk Don Draper impression for the rest of the day. Everyone will love you for it.”
Osso’s Portola, an Old Fashioned variation, is the perfect homage to Mad Men‘s Season 2 when Don Draper visits California. “It has the same feel as a classic cocktail but with the swagger of California,” says drink creator Darwin Manahan.
by Darwin Manahan, Osso
2 oz Buffalo Trace
1/4 oz rich sugar syrup
4 dashes Angostura bitters
2 dashes orange bitters
20 drops of bees wax (from a bees wax candle)
Place all liquid ingredients in mixing glass. Drop melted wax into liquid while stirring. Add ice, then stir for 30 or 40 revolutions. Fine strain over rocks and garnish with a lemon peel.
Game of Thrones
For the show, Sassafras Saloon’s Karen Grill likes her Gates of Eden cocktail, a light and herbaceous gin sour with Ford’s gin, apricot liqueur, lemon juice, egg white and marjoram. “At first glance it will make you feel like you’re walking through the gardens of King’s Landing with Olenna Tyrell,” she says.
Fun fact: The Bangkok Dangerous cocktail at Ace Hotel’s LA Chapter was originally called the “Ghost Grass” cocktail, after the deadly white grass that grows around the Dothraki‘s homeland. It’s a mix of Rhum JM 100, coconut, ginger, coriander, firewater, kaffir lime bitters, and paprika-chile oil. “I think it fits Game of Thrones because it’s seemingly an innocent, classy drink… Attractive, composed, artful, served in a teacup. But underneath, it’s 100 proof rhum base and its spicy flavors are aggressive and not at all subtle. Kind of like a classy English program that kills all its main characters,” explains Ace Hotel beverage manager Daniel Sabo.
Michael Lay of Broken Spanish and BS Taqueria picked his Green Garden cocktail—blanco tequila, Belle de Brillet, lemon, ginger, green juice medley, fennel flower—to represent the HBO series. “It’s loaded with spice and adventure that are sure to get those inner dragons all fired up,” he says. “I imagine Tyrion Lannister himself would prefer one.”
Despite its pro-American name, the Ace Hotel’s Daniel Sabo recommends his Sons of Liberty cocktail for Downton Abbey. “The show is such a wonderful expression of a very specific era of English upper crust, but with a bit of a surprising twist,” he says. “So, to me, a cup of tea just fit the bill perfectly.” Sons of Liberty is a riff on a cup of tea with Aviation gin, milk washed apricot cordial, rosewater, lavender, PX sherry, maldon, and bergamot smoke served in a snifter.
Nothing says proper British drinking than a Pimm’s Cup. And Matthew Biancaniello created just the one with which to toast the BBC hit. He makes his Avenue 31 Pimm’s Cup base from scratch with gin, sweet vermoth, Cherry Heering, and Grand Marnier and then infuses it with rhubarb, figs, and strawberries!
House of Cards
When Frank Underwood raps his class ring on a lecturn or desk he says it symbolizes hardening knuckles for a fight. What better way to cheer the show than with Butchers & Barbers’ aptly named The Time Is Ripe cocktail which is made with Aviation gin, creme de peche, lemon, thyme honey, and orange blossom mint? “I think the name ‘Time is Ripe’ embodies his character since he always seems to make the right moves and decisions at the most opportune times,” says bartender Avery Underhill.
However Terrine’s Ryan Wainwright thinks his version of the Blood & Sand speaks to Underwood’s character better. It’s dark and smooth, oh, and deadly made with Dewars 15 year, Ballentines, housemade cherry brandy, Cinzano, Carpano Antica, Angostura, and orange juice.
Orange Is the New Black
Bestia cocktail director Jeremy Simpson and beverage director Nick Krok think they have finally created drinkable pruno, aka prison wine. According to them Bestia’s Puddle Jumper—a mix of fresh lemon juice, fresh orange juice, apricot liqueur, fig liquor, bourbon—is “a tribute to the fruity and orangey drink the inmates try and mix up in prison.”
As for what to drink for Better Call Saul, try the Rusty Nail, It’s what Saul makes for himself in the first episode. For Homeland, since Claire Danes’ Carrie Mathison is apparently a fan of all things booze, toast with anything from white wine to lots of tequila.