Bennett Cocktail

A Bennett Cocktail in a coupe glass

Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

Kathy discovered the Bennett Cocktail while browsing the YouTube videos by The Educated Barfly. He found it in a book published in 1922 by Robert Vermeire, a Belgian barman working in London, "Cocktails: How to Mix Them." Vermeire writes that the drink was named after a well-known Chilean land-owner. Our best guess would be General Juan Pablo Bennett, a famous politition of the period and a member of the ruling junta in 1924-1925.

This cocktail is simply a gin sour with a couple of dashes of Angostura bitters. But it is wonderful. It definitely has a place on our top shelf. We use Tanqueray No. Ten Gin with our own home-grown Key limes. Vermeire used Old Tom Gin but any good brand of London Dry Gin will work fine.

Difford's Guide comments that: "Judicious dashing of bitters makes or breaks this drink." I think this calls for a scientific taste test, a with and without comparison, followed possibly by some injudicious dashing of bitters.

Our own experiments have revealed that this drink is totally dependent on the quality of the fruit. There's nothing for the lime juice to hide behind. It is the star of the show. Key limes fresh from our own tree in season are divine. Persian limes from the store were less than divine but still made a good drink. Key limes purchased from Amazon were no different to the Persian limes. We even tried Nellie & Joe’s Famous Key West Lime Juice which merely demonstrated there is no substitue for fresh squeezed juice.