Since its inception over a year ago, momentum within New York’s hospitality industry has been steadily building for our Collective.
Seeking to foster a culture of collaboration up and down the food chain, we regularly hold interactive events, where bartenders, chefs, makers and farmers can share ideas, forge relationships and further enhance their skills.
And on occasion, they can even engage in friendly competitions, in pursuit of sweet schwag. Such is the case with The Collective Cocktail Challenge; a quarterly contest held in pursuit of the best-themed tipple recipe. Winners receive season passes for all of Edible’s eat and drink events and have their recipe featured online and, for this issue, also in print.
Our inaugural champions are husband-and-wife team Matt and Jenny Dorsey, a mixologist and chef, respectively, who wowed an expert panel of judges with their Koyo Front, a take on a classic toddy with an apple twist.
“I literally ate an apple a day for more than a decade, which I think has subconsciously worked its way into my mixology,” says Matt. “Plus, New York is my adopted home and apples are an important part of the state’s agricultural ecosystem. So when I saw this contest, it all made sense.”
As is the case with many of his drinks, he drew further inspiration from his travels. During his honeymoon in Japan, he found himself awed by the care and craftsmanship artisans put into everything they do, even in acts as seemingly routine as preparing a cup of coffee. “I had a demitasse pour-over that took 30 minutes to brew, and it was the best coffee I’ve ever had in my life. This drink is my attempt at adopting that artfully crafted simplicity.”
Sharing its name with the annual changing of the leaves that takes place each fall in Japan, the Koyo Front is, indeed, elegant and approachable, being made with just two ingredients. “Yet there’s something about the stiff but refined flavor of the Japanese whisky, combined with the warming spices of the cider, that I think evokes a certain image and emotion in all of us,” says Matt. “Even just talking about it makes me think of sitting by the fireplace with Jenny on one of the first cold days of the year with a warm glass in my hand. What could be better than that?”
Courtesy of Matt and Jenny Dorsey
Makes 1 cocktail
2 ounces Japanese whisky (we use Hibiki Harmony)
6 ounces hot spiced apple cider (we make apple cider from a blend of local apples, spiced with cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, green cardamom, orange peel)
Add Japanese whisky and apple cider to a pre-warmed coffee glass and stir. Garnish with freshly grated nutmeg and a cinnamon stick.