One of NYC's Top Bartenders, Franky Marshall, Wants You to Drink More Banana Liqueur
Franky Marshall has an intimidating résumé. She was part of the opening teams at both Clover Club and the Dead Rabbit, worked at Monkey Bar and the revamped Holiday Cocktail Lounge, and this year became beverage director at Le Boudoir. To get to this Marie Antoinette–inspired space in Brooklyn Heights, you must go through French restaurant Chez Moi and down into the basement, where a lush, red room with marble tables is the ideal setting for Marshall’s menu, served in elaborate, regal glassware. Sip on a French 75 or the over-the-top Air Balloon while taking it all in. Here, she tells us how it all came to be.
When did you know you wanted to work behind the bar?
I came to that realization when I was a server and noticed that all the bartenders I worked with were doing less work, making more money and getting even more phone numbers. That's when I decided to make the leap.
What's the inspiration behind the menu at Le Boudoir?
Despite the bar's obvious reference to Marie Antoinette, I didn't want it to be a theme menu because that would have been too limiting. I really just want to offer a selection that is appealing to all kinds of drinkers: from the novice to the cocktail geek; or those who prefer to drink spirits neat, sip wine or just have a beer.
Which cocktail that you've developed in your career is your favorite, and why?
C'mon, that’s not fair... I'll say 53 Souvenirs. It has Cognac infused with walnut oil, Pedro Ximénez sherry, chocolate-chili bitters, stirred with a hint of expressed lemon oil. It's satisfying, tasty, food friendly, and—it won me $1,000 in a competition.
What is your favorite, super easy recipe that someone can re-create at home?
Here's one that is currently on the menu at Le Boudoir (as always, quality ingredients make the difference!):
- 1/4 ounce honey syrup (1-1 ratio of honey to water)
- 1/4 ounce banana liqueur
- 3/4 ounce blended scotch
- 1 ounce mezcal
Add all ingredients to mixing glass. Stir with ice. Strain into snifter over two ice cubes. Express and discard a lemon twist.