Created by Joe Santer of Bourbon and Branch, the Revolver is a rather interesting drink. On paper it hardly looks revolutionary – just a coffee tweaked Old Fashioned. However made properly, the Revolver is a revelation. One of those rare drinks that is much more than the sum of its parts, the Revolver is deep, rich, spicy and intense. It really doesn’t taste like a coffee flavoured bourbon at all. Thank goodness. The fact that you can get such complexity from three basic ingredients is really rather surprising. I can’t quite ascertain whether the Revolver is considered a modern classic or not (I suspect not) but it certainly should be. It also proves that there are still new discoveries to be made and they need not be overly complicated. We talked recently about creating infinity bottles and I can think of few better uses of a carefully balanced home blended bourbon than this. Otherwise a rye-forward spicy bourbon works best – although I see no reason not to use a rye whisky if you have any.
Flamed orange peel.
The Revolver is a cocktail that benefits from a flamed orange peel garnish. Actually it’s more of a bar trick that also works as a garnish. It looks impressive but is extremely simple to do (and extremely difficult to photograph as Mrs Proof and I found out to our amusement). Cut a small disc from the edge of a fresh orange with a sharp knife. Make sure not to cut it too thin – well into the pith but not into the flesh itself. Hold said disc between thumb and forefinger over the prepared cocktail. Hold a lit match (or lighter) to the centre of the disc and squeeze sharply. Oils from the orange peel will be squirted through the flame and will ignite briefly (but impressively) before landing on the drink. The peel can then be wiped along the rim of the glass and discarded, dropped into the glass, or both. Please practice this few times before trying it in front of guests and do so with due care and attention. I’m not much of a video guy so here’s a quick demo from someone who is.
2oz / 60ml high rye bourbon (eg. Wild Turkey 101, Bulleit bourbon or Four Roses Single Barrel).
0.5oz / 15ml coffee liqueur (I used Kahlua).
2 dashes orange bitters (I used Regans).
Stir with ice and strain into a chilled champagne coupé.
Garnish with a flamed orange peel (see above).
Toast Joe Santer, creator of The Revolver.