Brown Derby
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Brown Derby
Cocktail recipe

Rating

4 / 5
Named after the famous Los Angeles diner, the Brown Derby is a classy cocktail that marries the rich warmth of bourbon with the natural sweetness of maple syrup and the ... more Named after the famous Los Angeles diner, the Brown Derby is a classy cocktail that marries the rich warmth of bourbon with the natural sweetness of maple syrup and the bright acidity of pink grapefruit juice. This sophisticated blend creates a harmoniously balanced drink with a smooth, sweet-and-sour profile, making it a delightful choice for those who appreciate depth in their cocktails. Served in a stylish cocktail glass, the Brown Derby stands out for its unique flavor combination, catering to both bourbon aficionados and cocktail lovers looking for something refreshingly different. With its alluring mix, this cocktail has become a staple in the world of mixology, offering a taste of vintage Hollywood glamor.
Check out all our FAQ's on this cocktail
Base ingredient
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Bourbon
Alcohol content
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17.14% | 1.2 units *
Details
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Classic

Cocktail glass

Ingredients

oz
ml
cl
30ml 1oz 3cl
10ml ⅓oz 1cl

Cocktail Colin says:

4/5

The Brown Derby is a splendid example of how cocktail crafting can turn into an art form, mixing the robust warmth of bourbon with the tartness of pink grapefruit juice and the subtle sweetness of maple syrup. This combination allows for a seamless dance between the fruity acidity and the deep, sweet notes, creating a complex yet surprisingly refreshing profile that delights with each sip.

Method
How to make a Brown Derby

Serves 1 · Takes 3 minutes
Begin by placing all of the ingredients into a cocktail shaker filled with ice
Shake vigorously for about 10-15 seconds, or until you notice the shaker's exterior has frosted over
Once shaken, use a fine mesh strainer to pour the mixture into a pre-chilled glass, ensuring any ice fragments are caught and only the smooth drink is served
Enjoy your perfectly crafted cocktail

Learn more about some of the mixology terms used in this cocktail

·  Shake  · 

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FAQ's

ORIGINS_HISTORY

What is the origin of the Brown Derby cocktail?

The Brown Derby cocktail is named after the famous Brown Derby restaurant chain in Los Angeles, which was popular in the Golden Age of Hollywood. It's believed to have been created in the 1930s, although the exact origin within the chain is debated. The cocktail gained popularity for its simple yet refreshing combination of bourbon, grapefruit juice, and honey (or maple syrup in some variations).

INGREDIENT_SUBSTITUTIONS

Can I use a different type of syrup instead of maple syrup in a Brown Derby?

Yes, while maple syrup provides a unique flavor to the Brown Derby, you can substitute it with honey syrup or simple syrup if preferred. Honey syrup will offer a taste closer to the cocktail's original recipe, giving a floral sweetness that complements the bourbon and grapefruit juice.

INGREDIENT_SPECIFICS

What type of bourbon is best for a Brown Derby?

For a Brown Derby cocktail, it's best to use a bourbon that's well-balanced and not too overpowering, so it can harmonize with the sweetness of the maple syrup and the tartness of the grapefruit juice. A medium-bodied bourbon with a slightly sweet profile is ideal. Brands like Buffalo Trace, Maker's Mark, or Woodford Reserve are excellent choices.

FAQ

Is there a specific reason the Brown Derby is served in a cocktail glass?

Serving the Brown Derby in a cocktail glass is not just for aesthetics; it's also practical. The wide brim of the cocktail glass allows the drink's aroma, especially the citrus from the grapefruit juice, to be more pronounced, enhancing the drinking experience. Moreover, a cocktail glass typically doesn't hold ice, which suits the serving method of the Brown Derby—cold but not diluted by ice.

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