Bitter, and rich and smooth as a Manhattan, the Yard Bird is a drink with a scrappy and adaptable soul.
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Before he was resident musician at ChefSteps, Hans Twite tended bar at a spot called Smith on Seattle's Capitol Hill. This low-lit, taxidermy-lined haunt is where Hans met ChefSteps co-founder Grant Crilly and made him a Yard Bird, a cocktail created by another Smith bartender and tweaked along the way to evolve into a booze-forward, lime-laced concoction with fierce botanicals and a fair amount of funk. Grant loved it, and a friendship formed over many, many more.
Bitter, and rich and smooth as a Manhattan, the Yard Bird is a drink with a scrappy and adaptable soul. You can use any amber-toned aged rum to make it—we're partial to Zaya Gran Reserva, though Ron Zacapa works great as well. The cocktail's other components—herbaceous Amaro Montenegro, artichoke-fueled Cynar—are awesome ingredients to have on hand, but feel free to play around with other amari as well. So long as you maintain the proportions (more on that below), the options are basically endless. Similarly, you can go hi-tech on the drink with our rapid-infused Bitters #013, or just buy cardamom bitters at the liquor store.
In homage to the Yard Bird's fast-and-loose spirit, we offer a quick, easy-going approach. If you're making a bunch of drinks, or are after an impeccably prepared cocktail, refer to the recipe upgrades we list below. And if herbal liqueurs and funky spirits aren't your thing, read on for some of our other favorite cocktail recipes, along with tips and techniques for building your own drinks. Then, invite a friend or two over and get mixing—who knows, you may wind up with some sweet new job.
Get the full recipe at chefsteps.com