Orange Crush

It was time to break out the Dry Curacao. I had bought it a year ago knowing it was a common ingredient in classic cocktails and assumed we’d need it. But nope. Not even once has any stumbled-upon recipe called for it. So I went looking. What I found was this recipe for an Orange Crush, described as decidedly bitter but delightful. Just like me. I also had a new bottle of tequila I was eager to taste (courtesy of my twin), so this boozy little number was officially singin’ my song. Here’s how we made it…

1 oz silver tequila (we used Maestro Dobel Diamante)
1 oz Aperol
1/2 oz Dry Curacao
1/2 oz freshly squeezed orange juice
1 oz freshly squeezed lime juice
2 dashes orange bitters

Place all the ingredients in a shaker filled with ice, secure the lid, and shake until chilled. Strain into an ice-filled tumbler, and garnish with a slice of lime.

The verdict: So good. I joke that bitterness is underappreciated, but there’s something so refreshing about a cocktail that pumps the brakes on everything else going on around you and demands your undivided attention. This cocktail was that, at least for me. Enough natural sweetness from the orange juice to round off the boozy edges, and enough warmth from the Curacao to smooth out the acrid Aperol and lime juice. As for the tequila, turns out it was not meant for mixing. As spectacularly delicious as it was, it was also a single-estate tequila, distilled in 2015, number and signed by the person who makes it and blends it—which my twin noted when I enthusiastically reported how delicious it was, mixed with five other bossy ingredients. No regrets though. Would drink this all summer.

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