Japanese Cocktail

A Jerry Thomas original.

japanese cocktail orgeat recipe

First appearing in Jerry Thomas’s 1862 How to Mix Drinks, the Japanese Cocktail is accompanied with no explanation of its namesake, nor do its ingredients lead one to believe it is of any Asian persuasion. However, as David Wondrich surmises in Imibibe!, this vanguard cocktail perhaps had something to do with a visit (or four) paid to Thomas’s New York City bar on Broadway by a member of Japan’s first diplomatic mission to America, Tateishi Onojirou Noriyuki, or “Tommy,” as he was known among the ladies. The delegation resided quite near Thomas’s saloon, and Tommy quickly drummed up a reputation for spending plenty of nights out on the town. It can be assumed that a raucous evening or two spent at the bar would be enough cause for Thomas to christen a cocktail in honor of his Japanese regular.

Ingredients

Serving: 1

  • 2 ounces cognac
  • 1/2 ounce orgeat
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters

Garnish: lemon peel

Directions
  1. Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker.
  2. Add ice and shake until chilled.
  3. Strain into a chilled coupe or cocktail glass.
  4. Garnish with a lemon peel.
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