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A spicy Old Fashioned

“What sets it apart is the bittersweet chocolate coming up the back”

Wendy McGlinnen: "I’m also selling the experience of doing something naughty—like a teenager sneaking a flask into a concert.”
Wendy McGlinnen: "I’m also selling the experience of doing something naughty—like a teenager sneaking a flask into a concert.”

Consider the quotidian comforts of the common whiskey flask. The preferred vade mecum of serious sippers, this versatile vessel fits in pocket, purse, or petticoat—a genie in a bottle who, at a moment’s command, provides instant courage, sudden friendship, or fast and frequent commiseration.

Place

Barbusa

1917 India Street, San Diego

As Barbusa’s bar manager Wendy McGlinnen points out, this little friend also has a wild side, which she’s captured in a new cocktail, the Caloroso, ready to serve, batched, bunged, and served in a deep-freeze frosted 4-ounce glass flask.

“The Caloroso is really designed to be drunk straight out of the flask for presentation,” McGlinnen says, noting that glassware is available upon request, “but I’m also selling the experience of doing something naughty—like a teenager sneaking a flask into a concert.”

With the first taste, customers know why the Caloroso takes its name from the Italian word for “heartwarming welcome.”

“You’re going to get a warm sensation from the cocktail,” McGlinnen says. “It does come off a little spicy and a little sweet with the pepper, the bite of the bourbon, and the sweet of the chocolate bitters.”

McGlinnen tentatively places her Caloroso in the Old Fashioned wheelhouse.

“You could call it a spicy Old Fashioned,” she says. “Its spices definitely make it a cold-weather cocktail.”

Still, the Caloroso establishes its own place of residence in the cocktail neighborhood.

“What sets it apart is the bittersweet chocolate coming up the back,” she says. “You’re going to get the warmth of the cinnamon and chili up front, and then the heat of the bourbon. But the lasting finish comes from the chocolate, which makes you want to take another sip.”

Barbusa’s Caloroso

Barbusa's Caloroso
  • 2 1/2 oz. Bulleit or Woodford Reserve Bourbon
  • 2 dashes Ancho Reyes Chili Liqueur
  • 3/4 oz. Fee Brothers’ Aztec Chocolate Bitters
  • 1 1/2 oz. Honey Simple Syrup*

Combine ingredients in jar, chill in freezer overnight, pour into glass (or stainless steel) 4 oz. flask, seal, place flask in freezer for half-hour to an hour; when ready to use, garnish flask’s neck with tiny chili skewered and wrapped in orange peel.

  • * Macerate chilies and cinnamon, add to saucepan of water, bring to boil, simmer for 45 minutes, strain, add honey to liquid; chill before using.
  • 2 cups Water
  • 2 medium dried Ancho Chili
  • 2 1/2 Cinnamon Sticks
  • 1 cup Wildflower Honey
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Wendy McGlinnen: "I’m also selling the experience of doing something naughty—like a teenager sneaking a flask into a concert.”
Wendy McGlinnen: "I’m also selling the experience of doing something naughty—like a teenager sneaking a flask into a concert.”

Consider the quotidian comforts of the common whiskey flask. The preferred vade mecum of serious sippers, this versatile vessel fits in pocket, purse, or petticoat—a genie in a bottle who, at a moment’s command, provides instant courage, sudden friendship, or fast and frequent commiseration.

Place

Barbusa

1917 India Street, San Diego

As Barbusa’s bar manager Wendy McGlinnen points out, this little friend also has a wild side, which she’s captured in a new cocktail, the Caloroso, ready to serve, batched, bunged, and served in a deep-freeze frosted 4-ounce glass flask.

“The Caloroso is really designed to be drunk straight out of the flask for presentation,” McGlinnen says, noting that glassware is available upon request, “but I’m also selling the experience of doing something naughty—like a teenager sneaking a flask into a concert.”

With the first taste, customers know why the Caloroso takes its name from the Italian word for “heartwarming welcome.”

“You’re going to get a warm sensation from the cocktail,” McGlinnen says. “It does come off a little spicy and a little sweet with the pepper, the bite of the bourbon, and the sweet of the chocolate bitters.”

McGlinnen tentatively places her Caloroso in the Old Fashioned wheelhouse.

“You could call it a spicy Old Fashioned,” she says. “Its spices definitely make it a cold-weather cocktail.”

Still, the Caloroso establishes its own place of residence in the cocktail neighborhood.

“What sets it apart is the bittersweet chocolate coming up the back,” she says. “You’re going to get the warmth of the cinnamon and chili up front, and then the heat of the bourbon. But the lasting finish comes from the chocolate, which makes you want to take another sip.”

Barbusa’s Caloroso

Barbusa's Caloroso
  • 2 1/2 oz. Bulleit or Woodford Reserve Bourbon
  • 2 dashes Ancho Reyes Chili Liqueur
  • 3/4 oz. Fee Brothers’ Aztec Chocolate Bitters
  • 1 1/2 oz. Honey Simple Syrup*

Combine ingredients in jar, chill in freezer overnight, pour into glass (or stainless steel) 4 oz. flask, seal, place flask in freezer for half-hour to an hour; when ready to use, garnish flask’s neck with tiny chili skewered and wrapped in orange peel.

  • * Macerate chilies and cinnamon, add to saucepan of water, bring to boil, simmer for 45 minutes, strain, add honey to liquid; chill before using.
  • 2 cups Water
  • 2 medium dried Ancho Chili
  • 2 1/2 Cinnamon Sticks
  • 1 cup Wildflower Honey
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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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