As the end of October draws near, I continue to feature the scary, the evil and the ghoulish for your Halloween drinking pleasure, even if it's just the names that are creating all of the fun. Perhaps the Diablo wasn't scary enough for you last week, or the tequila was too diabolical for your frightened taste buds. If you decided to keep your distance, I encourage you to get a lot closer to our fiendish devil this time. I'm not asking you to shave his goatee, but consider the inspiration that led to two versions of our Drink of the Week, the Satan's Whiskers cocktail.
That's right, this is a two-for-one recipe because history has recorded two slightly different ways to concoct this drink. According to Harry Craddock's eponymous tome The Savoy Cocktail Book, the hair on Satan's beard is either straight or curled. Thankfully, your preference will depend on personal taste rather than some soul-bartering theological dilemma. I encourage you to try it both ways, or to follow Paul Harrington's advice: take the potion curled if you are drinking before dark and straight after the sun has set. The thing I love about this drink is that it has the intense flavor of oranges—deepened by the vermouth—without coming across as being overly sweet. Whether you prefer to take it straight or curled, it's so tasty they'd be crazy not to serve it in cocktail heaven.
Satan's Whiskers (Straight)
.75 oz gin
.75 oz dry vermouth
.75 oz sweet vermouth
.5 oz orange juice
.5 oz Grand Marnier
1 dash orange bitters
Add all ingredients to a cocktail shaker with plenty of ice and shake until hell freezes over (or until the drink is cold—whichever happens first). Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
Satan's Whiskers (Curled)
Same as above, but replace the Grand Marnier with orange curaçao.