Cocktail Diaries: The Penny Chillin’ – A Modern Classic Cocktail With a Twist
As you walk up to the AZ Distilling Co. bar, you’re transported to a different time.
Shelves of their house-distilled spirits line the wall behind the bar. A black and white portrait of a portly man with an extravagant mustache stares at you as you sit at the bar. You spy a cut-crystal cocktail beaker ready to mix up a cocktail. As you look over the elegantly simple menu, you are greeted by your old favorites and the cocktails that stand the test of time.
“Classics are classics for a reason,” says bartender Micah Olson. Micah is part of the trio that owns and operates AZ Distilling Co., along with Jason Grossmiller and Jon Eagan.
As a mixologist, certified sommelier, and veteran barman, Micah carefully crafted the cocktail menu to highlight the exceptional flavors of their house-distilled spirits. Despite only being comprised of a handful of ingredients, the cocktails dance across the palette. With the simple-to-make approach, patrons can recreate the aperitifs at home.
In addition to serving customers their award-winning spirits, AZ Distilling Co. offers visitors a front-row seat to the distillery process. Tours of the second-oldest craft distillery in the state are offered on Saturdays and Sundays, every hour from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. For $10, customers are able to explore the distillery, learn about the distilling process, and enjoy some freshly distilled samples. Just make sure to book your tour online and 24 hours in advance.
If you’re looking to really impress your friends and employees, the space can also be rented out for private parties.
Staying true to their mantra, “first the west, then the world,” AZ Distilling Co. continues to grow and is now selling in five states and two countries, with more expansion plans in the works. The good news for us locals is that we don’t have to travel far for delicious drinks. Stop by Wednesday-Sunday from 4-6 p.m. for happy hour and enjoy $6 select cocktails.
Now let’s get to the good part: the cocktail. This month we’re featuring AZ Distilling Co.’s popular concoction, the Penny Chillin’.
This delightful concoction is inspired by the modern classic scotch-based Penicillin cocktail. As one of Micah’s favorite drinks, he knew it belonged on the menu.
Without a Scotch in the AZ Distilling Co. lineup, it was time to get a little creative.
To achieve the smoky flavor commonly associated with Scotch, a smoked Chinese tea is brewed and infused into a honey syrup. That syrup is added to the Copper City Bourbon, with lemon and ginger. Shake it all up and the result is the Penny Chillin’.
The Penny Chillin’
1.5 oz. Copper City Bourbon
1 oz. Lemon
.5 oz. Ginger Syrup
.5 oz. Smoked Tea Honey
Add bourbon, lemon, ginger, and smoked team honey to a shaker with ice. Shake until thoroughly mixed. Strain into a rock glass full of ice. Garnish with lemon.