This beautiful bottle of Bärenjäger honey liqueur found its way to my desk last week and since that time I’ve been conducting high-level research. Did you know it was originally used by 15th century Prussian sportsmen to bait bear traps? The name itself means "bear hunter." It does taste remarkably like honey (duh!) and the simplicity of tossing back a few shots is a rewarding experience that includes tingling warmth and a heightened sense of well being. However, the good folks from the Sidney Frank Importing Company also sent a book of can’t-miss recipes (along with their sincere request that I drink responsibly) so that I may explore the intricacies of this velvety tonic with confidence. Thus far I’ve been dumping liberal amounts in my tea in an effort to diminish the effects of a sinus infection.
2 oz Bärenjäger
1/2 oz lemon juice
Shake with ice and strain into a sugar-rimmed glass with rocks.
Bären von Bourbon
1 oz Bärenjäger
3/4 oz bourbon
1 oz lemon juice
Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a rocks glass. Garnish with lemon wheel.
1 oz Bärenjäger
1/2 oz brandy
2 1/2 oz hot apple cider
Combine all ingredients in a footed mug. Garnish with lemon wheel.
One of the things I really appreciate about the book of recipes is the minimal ingredients. A lemon, some bourbon, and you’re in business. Few things fill me with more wig-flipping rage than cocktail recipes that require esoteric ingredients that no one on earth has on hand ("Wha? I don’t have any Creme de Cassis! @#$!% I’ll just use Robitussin.").
Anyhoo, if your cocktails need more body and sweetness, reach for the Bärenjäger. And by all means shower me with your own concoctions, ideas, and drinking dares. I’ve still got half a bottle left.