The Red Hook, considered a contemporary classic cocktail, was created in 2003 by Vincenzo Errico at the infamous Milk & Honey in New York. It was Errico’s take on the old school classic Brooklyn cocktail, hence the reason he named it after a Brooklyn neighborhood.
The Red Hook is rye-forward, like any respectable descendant of the venerable Manhattan, but stands out for the use of two unique modifiers, one being Luxardo maraschino liqueur and the other Punt e Mes, a “sweet” vermouth that barely fits in that category given its intense bitterness and darker fruit and coffee notes. Combining the two ingredients creates something more akin to an Italian amari, balancing the rye spice in the whiskey with a unique mix of bitter spices, sweet cherry, and a bit of cola. For a cocktail this simple to assemble, the Red Hook definitely punches above its weight in complexity and flavor.
2 oz. rye whiskey (100 proof or better)
½ oz. Punt e Mes vermouth
½ oz. Luxardo maraschino liqueur
Stir all ingredients over ice and strain into a chilled coupe. Garnish with a Luxardo cherry.