My Top Three Failed Cocktail Ideas…and the Better Classics That Inspired Them

Noble failures. 🙂

Perhaps the Fowl Shot should be renamed the Foul Shot? 😉

cocktails & cologne

Some of the greatest cocktails are simply variations on classics, substituting one spirit for another. There are dozens of great riffs on the Negroni (like the whiskey-based Boulevardier), and you can make an Old Fashioned out of just about any spirit — or combination of spirits (like the Oaxacan Old Fashioned with tequila and mezcal, or the Old Bay Ridge with rye and aquavit).

But it doesn’t always work. Most of my failed experiments are forgotten, but three stand out because I named them before I even attempted them. I’m so enamored with my cleverness that I can’t give up on them. Not yet.

Failed Cocktail #1: The Fowl Shot
Bullshot, the beef-broth and vodka cocktail, is misunderstood and under-appreciated. Perhaps it’s because it’s basically boozy meat juice; maybe if it were made with bacon or involved bone marrow it could overcome its low reputation. But trust me, done right…

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