What the world needs now is more Ward Eights. No matter your political perspective, I hope we agree on this salient issue (unless you’re riding an early-1900s Prohibitionist ticket, in which case maybe you should just shut this book before you get your long johns bunched). With an equilibrium of rye, sweets, and sour, it should be beyond politicking--a drink bringing us back together in these hard times, a drink that can be served on Wall Street and Main Street. You see, even I start sounding like a county speech writer when I haven’t had enough Ward Eights. This is why politics is dangerous business, and why (one hopes) the folks whipped the first Ward Eight together at Boston’s Locke-Ober restaurant to trumpet in liquid form Mr. Martin Lomasney’s election as the Eighth Ward’s representative in the state legislature.
2 ounces rye
1 ounce simple syrup
3/4 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 ounce grenadine
Orange slice for garnish
Maraschino cherry for garnish
1. Fill a cocktail shaker halfway full with ice cubes and no double talk. Add the rye, syrup, and lime juice. Shake well.
2. Add the grenadine to the shaker, and shake twice more, giving a nod to Washington (the city or state).
3. Strain the mix into a goblet and garnish with the orange and cherry (politicians get hungry).
A Variation: There’s another popular recipe for this political favorite, one that also is worth trying. For it, take out the lime juice and simple syrup, and add 1/2 ounce each of orange juice and lemon juice. I learned my eights on the above, but am not going to campaign against the variation either.
A.J. Rathbun is the author of Good Spirits: Recipes, Revelations, Refreshments, and Romance, Shaken and Served with a Twist (Harvard Common Press, 2007) and other books. All of his books, including the soon-to-be-released Champagne Cocktails and In Their Cups are available at www.amazon.com/ajrathbun