Mel Waters

Morgan Schick, Trick Dog | San Francisco

According to Morgan Schick, rainwater Madeira is a natural companion for whiskey. Riffing on the bourbon, bitter and fortified wine construction of a Boulevardier, Schick incorporates a housemade blueberry bitter aperitivo, but subs in rainwater for sweet vermouth. “Sweet vermouth is a little too flabby [in the drink],” he explains, adding that rainwater Madeira’s dry, naturally woody edge helps to keep the spiritous drink in balance.


Serving: 1

  • 1 1/4 ounce rye, preferably Bulleit
  • 3/4 ounce rainwater Madeira, preferably Henriques & Henriques
  • 1 1/4 ounce blueberry bitter (see Editor's Note)
  • 5 dashes pepper-rose hip bitters (see Editor's Note)

  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing glass over ice and stir until chilled.
  2. Strain into a chilled coupe glass.
Editor's Note

Blueberry Bitter:
1 1/2 cups Cappelleti
1/2 cup Amaro Montenegro
1/2 cup Cynar
1/2 cup Dolin Rouge vermouth
1/2 pound frozen blueberries (thawed)

Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher. Using a wooden spoon, gently press the blueberries into the mixture until lightly crushed. Let the flavors marry for one week, then strain.

Pepper-Rose Hip Bitters:
1/2 ounce black peppercorns
2 ounces rose hips
1 1/2 cups Everclear

Spread black peppercorns and rose hips on a baking sheet and toast in the oven over low heat until fragrant. Combine the toasted black peppercorns and rose hips with the Everclear and allow to steep together for one week. Strain and bottle.