“It’s a simple take on a classic Old-Fashioned,” says Sarah Morrissey of her Deacon Blues. Named for the eponymous Steely Dan song, the drink first started with a Scotch base, but the spirit didn’t jibe with the spiced simple syrup. In its place, Morrissey opted for the smoky hint of mezcal alongside overproof bourbon. “I love doing split-base cocktails. The dryness of the overproof bourbon, a touch of spicy-sweet syrup and smoke from the mezcal brings it all together,” says Morrissey.
- 2 dashes Angostura bitters
- 1/4 ounce black pepper-vanilla syrup (see Editor's Note)
- 1/2 ounce mezcal, preferably Agave de Cortes Joven
- 1 1/2 ounces 100-proof bourbon, preferably Old Forester 100
Garnish: lime twist and fresh black pepper
- Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass over ice and stir until chilled.
- Strain into a chilled rocks glass over a large ice cube.
- Garnish with a lime twist and fresh black pepper.
Black Pepper-Vanilla Syrup:
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
1 vanilla bean, split open
40 cracks fresh black pepper
In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, combine all ingredients until sugar is dissolved. Strain out the solids and store in a sealable container.