(POSTED: July 29, 2004)
How To Layer Drinks
Layered drinks are beautiful to look at, usually taste wonderful and are rather simple to make. If you follow these steps and recipes, you will be able to impress your friends with your knowledge of mixology.
The first thing you need is to choose a glass in which to make your creation. While a shot glass or small rocks glass will work, a Pony glass will make your drink look more attractive. A Pony glass is a small stemmed glass with a rounded bottom and fluted top, they generally hold about the same amount of liquid as a shot glass. You will also need a spoon.
The secret to making the perfect layered drink is to pour your heaviest liqueur first, then add other liqueurs according to their density. This way the alcohol will not mix, but layer, one on top of the other. To figure the density of different liqueurs you may have to experiment a bit, but generally syrupy schnapps type liqueurs are the most dense, then cream liqueurs such as Irish Cream, and lastly regular liqueurs such as gin or vodka.
To actually pour these drinks, the secret is to pour slowly, barely dribble the liqueurs into your glass. Start with your first liqueur and pour it into your glass, now take your spoon and place the tip of the spoon very close to your first liqueur, now carefully and slowly pour in your second liqueur over the back of the spoon and into the glass, then your third. Repeat this step as many times as necessary to complete your drink. After a little practice you can generally do away with the spoon and will be able to pour a slow steady stream, and keep your liqueurs from mixing.
Here are a few recipes to try:
POUSSE CAFÉ: Layer each of these liqueurs into a Pony glass in the order given, you will be using equal parts of each. Sloe Gin, Anisette, Green Creme de Mint and Blackberry Brandy.
EASTER EGG: Layer each of these into a Pony glass in the order given, use equal parts of each.
CHAMBORD: Tia Maria and Cream.
LIFESAVER: This uses Butterscotch Schnapps and then Irish Cream, equal parts of each, layered in that order.
ESKIMO KISS: Layer in this order, Swiss Chocolate Almond, Cherry Brandy, then Amaretto. Top this with aerosol whipped cream.
B52: Layer Kahlua, Amaretto, and lastly Grand Marnier.
ANGEL’S KISS: White Creme de Cacao, Sloe Gin, Brandy and Cream. Layer equal amounts into a small glass.
IRISH FLAG: Green Creme de Mint, next Irish Cream and lastly Brandy.
IRISH MONK: Layer Frangelica, Peppermint Schnapps, then Irish Cream.
IRISH SUNSET: This one can be made in two different variations, depending on which liqueur you use first. The taste will be the same, but the looks slightly different. Banana Liqueur, Amaretto, then Irish Cream. The first two liqueurs can be switched to make an IRISH SUNRISE.
This method can also be used to make a BLACK AND TAN, which is a beer drink. You will choose a dark beer for the bottom such as Guiness, then layer a lighter beer over the top, using the spoon method.
There are also many mixed drinks that can be made using this technic. After you have made your mixed drink, and shaken or stirred, a heavy liqueur can be poured over the top. It will make an interesting looking drink as the heavier liqueur sinks to the bottom.
TEQUILA SUNRISE: With this drink, mix a shot of tequila with orange juice and ice. When finished mixing, drizzle a little Grenadine over the top of the drink and watch it sink to the bottom.
CHOCOLATE MARTINI: chill 2 ounces of vodka, 1 ounce White Creme de Cacao, and a splash of Banana Liqueur by pouring it over ice. Strain this into a chilled martini glass, to this add just a touch of Brown Creme de Cacao. The Brown Creme de Cacao will settle to the bottom of the glass.
ZIPPER HEAD: Fill a large glass with ice, add 2 ounces of Chambord, then layer 3 ounces of vodka on top. Next add club soda to fill the glass. As long as poured carefully this will layer.
This is just a sampling of various layered drinks. After experimenting with densities, colors and flavors, you should be able to come up with attractive looking drink recipes of your own.