Before the holiday hullabaloo set in, my husband and I spent a lovely, relaxing weekend at West Baden Springs Hotel in West Baden Springs, Ind. Its fantastic domed atrium, shown above, was called “the Eighth Wonder of the World” when it was built in 1902. At various times during its history, the hotel also served as a military hospital, a Jesuit seminary and a liberal-arts college before falling into near ruin in the 1980s. It reopened in 2007 following a complete restoration by the Cook Group and it’s gorgeous.
In Ballard’s Bar, named for Ed Ballard, one of the hotel’s historic owners, we enjoyed a cocktail called the Bourbon Bliss that adds both orange juice and Grand Marnier to Woodford Reserve, the hotel’s house brand. I made one at home and it was just as good. (As an aside, I am not a huge fan of flavored bourbons, but orange pairs so well with bourbon that I don’t understand why everyone is cranking out cherry- and honey-flavored bourbons and no one has produced an orange-flavored one. How about it, science?)
In the meantime, here is the recipe for the Bourbon Bliss. Enjoy one this weekend after you’ve finished all that shopping and wrapping.
The Bourbon Bliss
1 ¼ ounce bourbon
¾ ounce Grand Marnier
4 ounces of orange juice
Splash of grenadine
Shake all ingredients and serve over ice with an orange/cherry flag.