Life / Food

7 cocktails inspired by Canadian cities

Raise your glass to A Field guide to Canadian Cocktails

A Stamped-inspired drink for Calgary.

A Field guide to Canadian Cocktails

A Stamped-inspired drink for Calgary.

Written by Victoria Walsh and Scott Mccallu, A Field guide to Canadian Cocktails raises a glass to those unique drink creations inspired by cities from coast to coast. More than 100 concoctions are included in the book, from Yukon’s Sour Toe Shot to New Brunswick’s Fiddlehead Martini.

To whet your palate, here are a few of the recipes from the book inspired by some of the cities Metro publishes in — including your own. 

A Field guide to Canadian Cocktails

Halifax

Pumpkin Coloda

Pumpkin season is cause for celebration in Nova Scotia, and loads of pumpkin festivals are held. There are many weigh-offs and community events all over the province, and even an annual pumpkin regatta in Windsor. In case you’re wondering, yes, that involves paddling in hollowed-out giant pumpkins. Windsor is the proud home of Howard Dill, who brought the world the largest variety of pumpkin, the Atlantic Giant. This is a Piña Colada variation with the season’s best, designed for a group to sip beachside while watching the big orange ships roll in. 

  • 8 oz dark spiced rum, such as The Kraken Black Spiced Rum or Ironworks Distillery Bluenose Black Rum
  • 8 oz Coconut Pumpkin Butter or 2 Tbsp each pumpkin purée and coconut cream
  • 6 oz unsweetened pineapple juice
  • 2 oz freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 12 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 4 heaping cups crushed ice
  • 4 homemade cocktail cherries or store-bought, for garnish
  • Tiny pinches grated nutmeg, preferably freshly grated, for garnish

Pour all ingredients except garnishes into a blender. Blend and pulse to an icy-slush consistency, pausing to scrape down sides of blender as needed. Pour into 4 chilled Collins glasses. Garnish each with a cherry and sprinkle of nutmeg.

Makes 4 drinks

A Field guide to Canadian Cocktails

Ottawa

The Double Double

Ask any Canadian what a double double is and you’ll get a description of a sweet, creamy coffee that Canucks “always have time for.” Although the double double — coffee with two creams and two sugars — isn’t technically on the Tim Hortons menu, it’s become synonymous with the brand. We couldn’t resist making a nighttime counterpart to the popular coffee order. We initially envisioned an equal-parts drink — two shots whisky and two shots Kahlúa — but we realized it’s just not a double double without all that creamy goodness, so we incorporated whisky cream liqueur.

  • 1 1⁄2 oz Canadian whisky, such as
  • Forty Creek Barrel Select
  • 3⁄4 oz Kahlúa
  • 3⁄4 oz Forty Creek Cream Liquor
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters
  • Handful of ice cubes
  • Small pinch finely ground espresso, for garnish

Pour all ingredients except ice and espresso into a mixing glass. Add ice and stir until chilled. Strain through a julep strainer into a chilled mug or glass. Sprinkle with espresso to garnish. Serve with a coffee stir stick, if you like.

Makes 1 drink

A Field guide to Canadian Cocktails

Toronto

Spadina Splash

This cocktail celebrates the vast array of flavours and ingredients found in Toronto’s Chinatown. A quick trip to Spadina Avenue and you can pick up a plethora of exotic ingredients with cocktail-friendly flavour profiles, both sweet and savoury.

  • 1 1⁄2 oz gin
  • 1 oz freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 1 oz chilled Junmai Nigori sake, such as
  • Ontario Spring Water Sake Company
  • 3⁄4 oz Ginseng & Red Date Syrup
  • 1⁄4 oz Campari
  • 2 dashes Bar 40 Umami bitters (optional)
  • Large handful of ice
  • Crushed ice
  • 1 to 2 oz chilled club soda (optional)
  • 1 red date, for garnish (optional)
  • 1 triangular piece grapefruit wheel, for garnish (optional)

Pour all ingredients except ice, soda and garnishes into a cocktail shaker. Add ice cubes.

Shake until chilled. Double strain through a Hawthorne strainer and a fine-mesh strainer

into an ice-filled fizz or small collins glass. Top with a splash of soda. Garnish with a red date and grapefruit, if you like. This cocktail is especially satisfying served with noodles.

Makes 1 drink

A Field guide to Canadian Cocktails

Calgary

The Stampeder

Also known as “Stampede City” and as “Cowtown,” Calgary is definitely the cowboy capital of Alberta or, as some know it, the “Texas of the North.” The city is also known for its annual stampede, which sells over a million tickets each year. Our Stampeder is a combination of a Bullshot — a savoury beef-broth drink — and the Caesar, Calgary’s cocktail claim to fame. This drink celebrates true Albertan flavours and packs the restorative power to get you back in the saddle after a night on the town, stampede-style.

  • Large handful of ice cubes
  • 1 1⁄2 oz vodka, such as Eau Claire Distillery Three Point
  • 3 to 6 dashes Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 to 4 dashes hot sauce
  • 1 small dollop horseradish (optional)
  • Generous grinding black pepper
  • 4 1⁄2 oz beef broth, preferably homemade
  • 2 1⁄2 to 3 oz chilled Tomato-Clam Juice (page 193) or store-bought
  • 1 lemon wedge
  • 1 celery stalk, for garnish
  • 1 lemon wheel, for garnish (optional)
  • Pinch salt, for garnish (optional)

In an ice-filled highball or pint glass, build ingredients in the order listed, except lemon

and garnishes. Squeeze in juice from lemon wedge, then drop wedge in drink. Stir to mix.

Garnish with celery stalk and lemon wheel, if you like. Taste and stir in salt, if using, or more of the other seasonings, if you like.

Makes 1 drink

A Field guide to Canadian Cocktails

Edmonton

Whoop-Up Bug Juice

The earliest incarnation of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police was formed in 1873, in part to help quell the chaos at trading posts such as Fort Whoop Up (now a historical site in Lethbridge). Bug juice — essentially flavoured hooch and one of the earliest “cocktails” invented on Canadian soil — was part of the problem. Early references describe it as a mixture of “alcohol spiked with ginger, molasses and red pepper, then coloured with black chewing tobacco, watered down and boiled to make firewater.”

We’ve taken some liberties and re-envisioned it as the ultimate Rum and Coke.

  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1⁄2 oz Ginger Syrup (page 182)
  • 2 oz dark rum, such as Havana Club Añejo 7 Year Old Rum
  • 1⁄2 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 to 2 dashes Scrappy’s Firewater bitters (optional)
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters
  • Large handful of large ice cubes
  • Crushed ice
  • 2 to 3 oz chilled cola
  • 1 long lemon peel strip
  • 1 piece candied ginger, for garnish

Cut a 1 1⁄4–inch thick slice of bell pepper. Place in a cocktail shaker along with ginger

syrup and muddle. Add rum, lemon juice and bitters. Add handful of ice cubes. Shake until chilled. Double strain through a Hawthorne strainer and a fine-mesh strainer into a chilled old-fashioned glass filled with crushed ice. Stir in cola. Flame lemon peel over drink, rub the outside rim of the glass with flambéed peel, then discard peel. Garnish drink with candied ginger.

Makes 1 drink

A Field guide to Canadian Cocktails

Winnipeg

Golden Boy

This brightly hued statuesque cocktail is inspired by the famous wheat-sheaf bearing Golden Boy sculpture that overlooks Winnipeg from the Manitoba Legislative Building. The complex flavours of this drink are almost as intriguing as this building’s architectural mysteries, secrets and symbols that are hidden in plain view — you can even take a tour on the topic.

  • 2 oz aged aquavit, such as Aalborg
  • Jubilaeums Akvavit
  • 3⁄4 oz Bärenjäger Honey Liqueur
  • 1⁄2 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1⁄4 oz Strega liqueur
  • 1⁄4 oz Simple Syrup (page 182)
  • 1⁄8 tsp Three Farmers Camelina Oil or good-quality olive oil
  • Tiny pinch coarse kosher salt or fleur de sel
  • Large handful of ice cubes

Pour all ingredients except ice into a cocktail shaker. Add ice. Shake until chilled. Double

strain through a Hawthorne strainer and a fine-mesh strainer into a chilled coupe glass.

Makes 1 drink

A Field guide to Canadian Cocktails

Vancouver

Jack With One Eye

We’ve dedicated this boozy sipper to the cult classic television show Twin Peaks. Early in the series, some of the characters cross the border into western Canada and head to a casino and brothel called One Eyed Jacks. We were thrilled to include several nods to flavour mentions in that episode, after discovering they worked wonderfully together in a spirit-forward cocktail.

  • 1 1⁄2 oz bourbon or Canadian whisky
  • 1 oz cold- or French-pressed good-quality brewed coffee, chilled
  • 1⁄2 oz Cointreau or Triple Sec
  • 1 barspoon maraschino cherry juice or cherry liqueur
  • 1 dash mole bitters
  • Handful of ice cubes
  • 1 large ice cube
  • 1 maraschino cherry, preferably with a stem

Pour all ingredients except ice and cherry into a mixing glass. Add handful of ice cubes and stir until chilled. Strain through a julep strainer over large ice cube in a chilled old-fashioned glass. Serve with a skewered cherry.

Makes 1 drink

Excerpted from A Field Guide to Canadian Cocktails by Scott McCallum and Victoria Walsh. Recipes copyright © 2015 Scott McCallum and Victoria Walsh, Photography copyright © 2015 Juan Luna. Published by Appetite by Random House, a division of Random House of Canada Ltd., a Penguin Random House Company. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

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