Drink special: lion’s tail

Season’s greetings! Forget the nog. One sip of the lion’s tail and you’ll be very merry. At “Glass half-full in Hollywood,” we call it “Christmas in a cocktail glass.”

The lion's tail mixed by Jeff Stewart. Photo by Jeff Stewart.

The lion’s tail mixed by Jeff Stewart. Photo by Jeff Stewart.

Our resident mixologist, music video and commercial director, Jeff Stewart, served up the lion’s tail at our latest cocktail sampler. This tasty treat was a fav of guests, who included founder of BestNewBands.com Tom Crosthwaite, editor Nicole Opyr, and writer/cartoonist Chris Hutton, along with a couple of designated drivers including former TV exec and author Carole Kirschner. The lion’s tail provided a festive taste of the season and complemented cranberry and banana breads nicely.

Made with all-spice dram, the lion’s tail boasts cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg flavors in abundance. All-spice dram is Jamaican pimento dram, which until recently wasn’t available – at least not in the U.S. Some mixologists turned to mixing all-spice dram themselves to create the lion’s tail. However for the average cocktail drinker, this extra step rendered the drink nearly forgotten. Fortunately in 2008, Haus Alperz, a Minnesota importer, brought St. Elizabeth all-spice dram to the States. This is Jeff’s recommended brand. Now you can get St. Elizabeth all-spice dram at many liquor sellers. Here in the States, Bev Mo often carries it, but you may need to help the staff find it by pointing them to the liqueur section.

So, this season you can serve a fresh “new” vintage cocktail at your holiday celebrations with ease.

The all-spice dram blends surprisingly well with bourbon to give lion’s tail a full-bodied flavor. There’s a roundness and smoothness to this drink. It goes down very easily. Jeff suggests a real bourbon for this drink, something like Bulleit or Knob Creek.

christmas in austin

Christmas in Austin, Texas. Photo courtesy of pixajen.

This drink is great for a small Christmas gathering, or try it on Christmas Eve. It’ll definitely get you into the spirit.

Wanna try the lion’s tail? Here’s Jeff’s recipe.

2 oz. bourbon
3/4 oz. allspice liqueur
1/2 oz. fresh lime juice
1/4 tsp. simple syrup
2 dashes Angostura bitters

Shake in an iced cocktail shaker for 25-30 seconds and serve in a cocktail glass.

Happy holidays. Keep your glass half-full. Drink responsibly.