Realistically speaking, there are few better combinations than a refreshing whiskey cocktail, barbeque, and a sunny summer afternoon. I was lucky enough to experience a bit of this heavenly triad at Bulleit’s tailgate luncheon held at the Green Building in Brooklyn this past Thursday afternoon, where barbeque from Fletcher’s and ice cream from Ample Hills were provided to accompany the beverages.
The event featured Bulleit’s Whiskey Woody-Tailgate Trailer, an alluringly rustic teardrop caravan created by New York-based designer Brad Ford and produced by Moore & Giles. This thing was seriously impressive. Built from Bulleit’s own reclaimed oak bourbon casks, the camper features leather furniture, a flat screen TV, surround system, and of course, an elegant bar fully-stocked with Bulleit Bourbon and Rye. When I first caught a look at this camping marvel, daydreams of taking it to a music festival instantly filled my head (however, such dreams were quickly crushed once I learned of the $150k price tag that comes with owning one of the two units that exist). A main cabin that doubles as a lounge/bed, a kitchenette, a fully-armed bar … what more could you possibly need?
I started off lunch with a visit to the trailer’s outstretched bar, where a couple of friendly bartenders were shaking up Bulleit cocktails for the afternoon’s guests. I first tried the Bulleit Bourbon Orange Cruiser, a blend of Bulleit Bourbon, mint syrup, pineapple syrup, fresh sweet and sour mix, orange slices, and mint sprigs. It was a refreshing, citrus combination that was just right for that kind of day. I found the overall orange flavor to be a lovely compliment to the bourbon, without being too sweet.
I then made my way to the lunch line, where an assortment of Fletcher’s barbeque, complete with all of the traditional side dishes, lined the table. I put together a pork barbeque sandwich and took a sampling of the beans and cornbread as well. The barbeque was perfect. Smoky and tender with just the right amount of seasoning. The sides were on point as well, a perfect compliment to my sandwich. My Bulleit Bourbon Orange Cruiser was definitely a nice pairing with the barbeque, creating a delicious combination of tangy, smoky, and sweet.
Next, I paid another visit to the Bulleit bar, where I decided to try the other cocktail being served that afternoon, the Bulleit Rye Smash. This drink featured a medley of Bulleit Rye, simple syrup, lemon wedges, mint sprigs, and dashes of bitters. The Rye Smash was enjoyable as well, less citrusy in flavor, but equally refreshing.
I finished lunch with a trip to the dessert table, where two flavors of ice cream from Ample Hills were being offered. I took a little bit of each (I’m always indecisive with decisions regarding ice cream). The first flavor I dove into was a chocolate ice cream with Oreo-type cookies crumbled throughout. Sometimes, I find combinations of multiple chocolate ingredients to be a sugar overload, but this one had it right. The second flavor I tried was vanilla with some type of candied cookie bits. It was excellent. The vanilla flavor was rich and the cookies provided a nice bit of crunch.
From start to finish, I thoroughly enjoyed my Brooklyn tailgating experience. The drinks were refreshing, the barbeque was quite tasty, and the ice cream was the ideal ending to a summer afternoon meal. Bulleit’s Whiskey Woody-Tailgate Trailer definitely made quite the impression. It’s a gorgeously detailed work of camping art that I’m still dreaming of bringing to Glastonbury.
Enjoy these drink recipes courtesy of Bulleit Bourbon:
1 oz. Bulleit Bourbon
1.5 oz. Tangerine juice
.5 oz. Cinnamon honey syrup
.04 oz. Angostura bitters
1.5 oz. Prosecco
Combine Bulleit Bourbon, tangerine juice and cinnamon honey syrup and bitters in a shaker with ice. Shake to incorporate and strain over fresh ice in a Collins glass. Top up with prosecco and garnish with an orange wheel.
Bulleit Rye Smash
1.25 oz. Bulleit® Rye
1 oz. Simple Syrup
3 Lemon Wedges
3 Mint Sprigs
3 Dashes Bitters
In an ice filled shaker combine all the ingredients. Shake vigorously and strain into an ice-filled rocks glass. Garnish with a mint sprig.
Article: Nicole Shyti
Photos: Shayne Hanley