Today’s drink of the day is an extremely simple one of my own, the Tramp’s Delight Cocktail.
I have been thinking about hobos and tramps lately. I suppose that’s what I might become if more people in Portland don’t realize the opportunity in their midst — even though from someone who has come from big, bad Los Angeles!
At any rate, the hobo motif got me thinking about the Liberal Cocktail and the Coxey Cocktail. This is why:
The first Liberal Era in the U.S.A. is considered to have been from 1890 to 1919. In that time there was an increase in organization among workers, poor farmers and the unemployed. Coxey’s Army of unemployed men and hobos became the largest-ever march (mostly via the rails) on Washington D.C. in 1894. Such events and times engendered names for two drinks that I have repeatedly enjoyed.
Both the Liberal Cocktail and the Coxey Cocktail have Picon Amer as the bitters. The Liberal Cocktail is based on rye whisky and has Picon Amer as a major part of the jigger.
The Coxey Cocktail is based on gin, modified with vermouth wine, and has a small amount of Picon Amer outside the jigger — functioning more like petite bitters.
My drink takes the gin base from the Coxey Cocktail, but is in the more simple form of the Liberal Cocktail — being without vermouth wine, and with the bitters as part of the jigger. Gin seems a bit more urban to me than whiskey. So I named this drink after the tramps, once a slightly more urban-sensed word for hobos. At least understand that before you freely re-associate the name of this drink with any more modern sense of the word.
Given that a lot of people in the states have gone silly purchasing superfluous types of bitters (and flavor drops masquerading as bitters), one might expect that a historic bitters like Picon Amer would once again be distributed here. Sadly, it is not yet — perhaps because many people don’t realize that amers and amari are bitters. Luckily, Paulucci Amaro CioCiaro can step in for now.
No sugar or simple syrup is needed here since both Picon Amer (and the recommended substitute, Paolucci Amaro CioCiaro) are rather sweet bitters — as are most grand bitters (wide-pour bitters).
Here it is: