As I stated in my last post on the Brandy Alexander, the Gin version is the original; and honestly, I feel it’s the better cocktail. Hugo Ensslin knew what he was doing with this one. There are echoes of the Ramos Gin Fizz in this, and one could argue that this is it’s second cousin. The fact that equal parts gin, half & half and white creme de cacao work so well together is a mystery when you think about it.
Why the change from gin to brandy? My opinion is that during the 1920′s gin was seen as somewhat of a lower class spirit, and brandy was a more aristocratic choice. We do know that several classic brandy based cocktails originated in Europe during the 1920′s, such as the Stinger and the Bosom Caresser. In any case, gin serves this cocktail well and deserves a wider audience.
1 oz gin
1 oz white creme de cacao
1 oz half & half
Garnish: grated nutmeg
Shake with ice and strain into chilled cocktail glass. Top with nutmeg.