September 27, 2023 2:40 pm

Ern Rea

For the summer heat, nothing beats a refreshing cocktail.  With this creation, I am aiming to take the basic margarita into new territory.  Salers Apertif is a brutal mixer that can really destroy the flavor profile of a drink, but used very sparingly it really works here.  Ern Rea is named after a feisty, brilliant attorney whose love of Taco Bell knows no bounds.  I prefer a slightly…elevated culinary experience, but I must admit to cloudy memories of college at 2:00am devouring a six pack of Taco Bell hard shells after a great night out with friends.  So grab yourself some of your favorite Mexican food and pair it with Ern Rea.  You will be guilty of only a decadent love of the good life.

Flavor Profile: Bitter Sweet with Lime



  • 2 1/2 oz Skrewball Peanut Butter Whiskey
  • 1 oz George Dickel Bottled-in-Bond
  • 3/4 oz Tempus Fugit Crème de Cacao
  • 1/2 oz Tuaca
  • 5 oz Heavy Cream
  • Dollop of Marshmallow Whip
  • 2 dashes Chocolate Bitters


  • Add all ingredients to a Boston shaker filled with ice
  • Shake for approximately 30 seconds
  • Strain into a highball glass filled with ice
  • Garnish: Skewered Peanut Butter Cup

My Take

I love traditional Mexican food.  Next to Italian, it’s my favorite culinary category, and I am always looking for a new cocktail to drink with its rich, savory, and spicy flavors.  Whiskey is generally not something thought of as a drink that would pair well with most Mexican dishes.  It’s not the first thing I reach for, certainly.  One would associate the old-standby Margarita, or some other cocktail with tequila as the base spirit.  But Mexicans are an inventive sort, and now they are making a big push into whiskey.  Sierra Norte Yellow Corn is a very sweet “corny” whiskey in the same vein of Mellow Corn here in the States; in a word, sweet.  It’s also very young, which makes Yellow Corn a perfect candidate for a cocktail.  Adding a little high quality tequila, Green Chartreuse, and Salers with the whiskey really elevated the herbal and savory nature of this cocktail.  I considered not using any fruit juice, but it just didn’t work.  However, adding the agave really lifts Ern Rea, and balances out the other flavors perfectly. 


Music Pairing

Santana “Black Magic Woman/Gypsy Queen” Abraxas (Columbia)

Abraxas is an amazing album from one of the great rock guitarists of all-time, and there are plenty of great tracks to choose from.  However, “Black Magic Woman” is Santana at his best.  Don’t settle for the radio cut that omits Gypsy Queen. It’s essential. Throw in Tacos Barbacoa, sip an Ern Rea, and prepare to be wowed.


"Whisky is liquid sunshine."

George Bernard Shaw

“The light music of whiskey falling into a glass – an agreeable interlude.”

James Joyce

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