I am so prone to overthinking things that I often forget this trait until something smacks me in the face with it. That was the case last weekend when I saw a cocktail called “The Bourgin” on the bar menu at Majid’s, a Mediterranean/American restaurant in Louisville, Ky. It featured bourbon, Domaine de Canton and ginger ale. “I’ll have the… Boor-zheen?” I ventured, assuming the name was French. “Burr-jin,” the bartender corrected. The drink was delicious, the ginger liqueur adding a spark without the attending burn that you sometimes find. As I sipped, I Googled “bourgin.” Nothing. I called the bartender back over and asked, “Can you tell me the origin of this drink’s name?” She looked at me with a touch of amusement and replied, “Bourbon and ginger. Bour-gin.” Oh.
3 oz. vanilla-infused bourbon*
1/2 oz. Domaine de Canton
Fresh lemon juice
Pour bourbon and Domaine de Canton into a shaker with ice. Squirt in some fresh lemon juice and shake. Add just a splash of ginger ale and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with lemon slice.
*To infuse bourbon, split a whole vanilla bean lengthwise and add to a clean Mason jar; pour over your bourbon of choice. In general, milder-flavored bourbons are best. Seal jar and keep in a cool, dark place. Gently shake daily and taste until the infusion reaches desired strength. Strain to remove big chunks, then filter through a coffee filter into a clean jar and seal tightly.
*A less time-consuming option: Add 1/2 oz. Woodford Reserve Bourbon Vanilla Simple Syrup. (Click here for link.)