The Cocktail Spirit with Robert Hess
The Cocktail Spirit with Robert Hess is dedicated to the creation of quality classic cocktails. Watch as he mixes up cocktail recipes from the past using the best ingredients.
Piña Colada Cocktail
17 Mar 08 33
It was on August 15, 1954, that Ramon "Monchito" Marrero Perez first introduced the Pina Colada to the customers of the Beachcomber Bar at the Caribe Hilton in San Juan, Puerto Rico. It is said that he spent three months working on it until he finally felt he had captured "the sunny, tropical flavor of Puerto Rico in a glass."
Old Cuban Cocktail
8 Jun 09 37
This wonderful drink was created by my wife, Audrey Saunders, proprietor of the Pegu Club in New York City. You will notice that it is closely related to the Mojito, but with far more elegance and sophistication. Audrey garnishes her original version with a sugar-coated vanilla bean. See, I told you it was sophisticated!
28 Apr 10 12
Benedictine is one of those products which often is gathering dust at most bars across the country. Typically they will even have just a bottle of "B&B" instead of Benedictine, which only shows that they don't really know how to use this product. So I am always on the lookout for great cocktails which can illustrate the value that Benedictine can bring to a drink. There are a few different cocktails going by the name of "Derby", but the version I show here is one which I think is an excellent drink to introduce people to the potential that Benedictine provides.
Pegu Club Cocktail
26 Nov 07 34
This is a fairly old cocktail which is just now being rediscovered. Dating back to the 1920's this was the house cocktail at the "Pegu Club" in Rangoon. I often use this drink to help people who claim they don't like gin realize that there really isn't anything to be afraid of.
17 Sep 07 19
First arriving in the mid 80's, the Cosmopolitan was "the" cocktail of the 90's. While it is still popular today, some may avoid it less they be seen as simply "following the pack". Since the Cosmo follows the classic-style formula of such great drinks as the Sidecar, Margarita, Daiquiri, and Aviation, there is nothing at all wrong with this drink, just be careful to make it with good quality ingredients.
18 Jun 07 15
A pre-prohibition cocktail which highlights the value of orange bitters. Few bartenders will know this once popular drink, but is worth rediscovering.
Hot Buttered Rum
23 Nov 10 4
Making a hot buttered rum can be a complicated process. The batter itself can have a dozen ingredients. Although it is delicious (Kathy Casey makes a wonderful Hot Buttered Egg Nog and if you are lucky enough, you can snag a delectable rendition at Zig Zag Cafe in Seattle) it is not necessary. In this episode, Robert shows you how to make a quick and easy hot buttered rum with simple ingredients any one would or should have available at a moments notice.
Ramos Gin Fizz Cocktail
15 Apr 08 25
The use of egg white and cream in this version of the fizz creates a unique experience. Velvet with a citrus background and a bubbly pop, the Ramos Gin Fizz.
El Floridita Cocktail
30 Jul 07 16
The "Floridita" Cocktail gets its name from the Floridita bar in Cuba. If you glance through various cocktail books, you will most likely find a variety of different drinks that go by this name, I'm not sure which one should be considered the original version, but this particular one I find to be quite delightful. You'll also learn about how to make homemade Grenadine in the process. (And as to the name of this drink using the masculine "El" instead of the feminine "La"... I've been told that while the establishment takes the feminine name of "Floridita", in Spanish the bar itself is masculine, and thus "El" should be used. At least that's what I've been told.)
Gin and Tonic Cocktail
24 Mar 08 29
The Gin & Tonic is of course an extremely simple drink to make, but is that any reason to avoid it? Heck I don’t think so, especially when you are using one of the new premium brands of tonic water coming onto the market, like “Q Tonic”.
13 Aug 07 14
I feel that there are far too few good tequila cocktails available, and so I'm always excited when I encounter a new one to add to my collection. I'm hoping that you'll appreciate the complex collection of flavors that the Rosita provides as much as I do.
How to Drink Absinthe
14 Dec 07 22
The allure of the "green fairy" is probably due in part to the illicit aura which surrounds this spirit, both in the wide-spread myths of its hallucinogenic properties, and that it is banned in many countries around the world. As the truth get's around that it isn't a hallucinogen, and as the bans gradually get lifted, we'll once again be able to enjoy absinthe for just it's taste, and the ritual associated with its service.
3 May 11 8
A beautifully simple and refreshing drink, the Americano was popularized by American tourists in Italy in the 1960s. Try one with your antipasto!
9 Nov 10 9
The Gimlet is an old style navy drink most likely invented when sailors in the British navy mixed their ration of gin with lime juice. A 1953 description was: "a real gimlet is half gin and half Rose's lime juice and nothing else" (Terry Lennox in Raymond Chandler's The Long Goodbye). Thus, Robert Hess shows you how to make a gimlet with Hendrick's Gin and Rose's Lime Juice, going against the idea that fresh is always better.
1 Mar 11 4
A good bartender inspires patrons with their creativity, skill and service behind the bar. Watching a master at work can do that. It is rare, however, when a patron inspires a bartender. Thus was the case with the Chas Cocktail created by Murray Stenson at Zig Zag Café in Seattle and named after Chuck Talbot, a regular at the bar with a love for Bourbon.
27 Sep 11 6
Essentially a Martini with the addition of Benedictine, the Caprice Cocktail is a simple and delicious drink.
2 Nov 10 11
Sometime during the year 1919, or perhaps early 1920, the "Negroni" cocktail was invented when Cammillo Luigi Manfredo Maria Negroni (reportedly a Count) asked Fosco Scarselli, barman at the Cafe Casoni to "fortify" his regular Americano with some gin. There is a letter from October 13, 1920 written to Count Camillo (at some point he dropped the second "m" in his name) from Frances Harper of Chelsea, London: "You say you can drink, smoke, & I am sure laugh, just as much as ever. I feel you are not much to be pitied! You must not take more than 20 Negronis in one day!"
Bourbon Milk Punch
26 Jul 11 12
It's time for breakfast in New Orleans. What to serve? Along side your grits and andouille there is nothing better than a smooth and creamy bourbon milk punch. After days of Mardi Gras revelry there could be nothing better to sooth your aching belly.
Pink Gin Cocktail
16 Mar 09 11
Nothing could be simpler, gin and bitters. It may not be a drink I'd recommend to somebody just getting interested in cocktails, but once you've grown accustomed to the normal lineup, it's a great drink to try. The amount of bitters can easily be adjusted either up or down depending on your tastes.
4 Jan 11 10
The Martinez cocktail is a precursor to the Martini and also directly related to the Manhattan. Its abundant use of sweet vermouth decreases the amount of alcohol in the cocktail overall but maximizes flavor. With the addition of Maraschino liqueur, even in a small measure, makes for a delightfully complex cocktail worthy of investigation. For a side by side comparison, mix up a Martinez a Martini and a Manhattan and sip them with your friends.
Añejo Highball Cocktail
16 Jun 08 24
The Anejo Highball was created by famed mixologist Dale DeGroff to pay homage to the celebrated bartenders of Cuba from back in the twenties and thirties. Dale says that this drink illustrates how necessary it is for the bartender to understand the role that each and every ingredient plays in the cocktails that they make.
16 Feb 09 26
An old and unfortunately forgotten cocktail, and one of the first which I learned which required the mysterious ingredient "orange bitters". It is a great drink to use to introduce people to "gin" cocktails. If you use "orange curacao" instead of Grand Marnier turns this into a "curled" version.
Income Tax Cocktail
15 Apr 10 10
It can often be said that paying your income tax is a bittered experience. As cocktails go, the Income Tax cocktail can be described as a "Bronx" cocktail with bitters, but it might be difficult to know if that is how it originally received its name.
4 Oct 11 16
The Casino Cocktail is a very gin forward cocktail. It can be made with Old Tom gin and showcases that spirit well.
Liqeuer, Aperitif & Digestif
- Almond Liqueur
- Apricot Liqueur
- Blackcurrant Liqueur
- Chocolate Liqueur
- Cherry Liqueur
- Ginger Liqueur
- Herbal Liqueur
- Mint Liqueur
- Pomegranate Liqueur
- Orange Liqueur
- Violet Liqueur