If you crave Manhattans then you’ll love this drink, Ragged Company. It’s a cleaner, sweeter version that brings out the smoothness of the sweet vermouth and add a refreshing orange yest kind of finish. The addition of Benedictine, made from 27 herbs and spices originated in France, brings a balance of herbal, crisp and fruity.. and it’s on par! I’ve seen notes where this ingredient doesn’t tend to pair well with gin, and it make a lot of sense for an already citrusy and herbal heavy spirit. It does however, fit quite well with ‘brown’ spirits like a rye or bourbon which add spiciness to this tangerine-esque liquor. In all honesty, Benedictine spurs a bit of curiosity… would I be able to make the same flavors if I mix a pinot grigio with a dash of sherry (though I haven’t validated this, the flavor combination makes sense). All in all, I would say Ragged Company is a solid and well balanced drink.. and makes me all the more curious to experiment a bit more with yet another new ingredient we’ve added to our cocktail collection.
Recipe as follows:
2 oz Bourbon
1/2 oz sweet vermouth
1 tsp Benedictine
2 dash bitters *I used Angostura
Shake the first 3 ingredients over ice and strain into a martini glass. Top with a couple dashes of bitters and enjoy!