Oh, you got me shakin’
Oh, you got me high – The Dandy Warhols
One Christmas when I was a kid, my mum bought a whole case of pretend Pepsi. TNT, I think it was called.
The blue and white ‘tins’ had metal ringpull lids, but the body of each can was actually made of plastic. I remember drinking these wee things as clearly as I see these letters pop on the screen as I type. Slightly flat and loaded with sugar, TNT was nothing like real Pepsi in bottles, but I still adored it. I polished off the whole case in a day.
Memories like these are why I really identify with the nostalgia and yearning distilled in Allison Kave & Keavy Landreth’s brilliant Butter & Scotch, named for their Brooklyn Bar.
For me, there’s no question the fabulous alcohol-fuelled shakes are the highlights of this wild, beverage-centred collection. Fun to make and fun to drink, the Butter & Scotch ice cream & milk cocktails seem designed exactly for that place my head was at when I guzzled all that TNT as a kid, and for where it is now as I dream back on the memory across the years.
Here, in the words of the bar team themselves, are three of my favourite creamy monsters from Butter & Scotch. First up, El Dudorino, then the bring-down-the-house Ramos Gin Fizz and finally, for me, something of the soul of Butter & Scotch, the Pepsi & Milk …
4 scoops coffee ice cream
2 ounces (60 ml) vodka (Butter & Scotch use Reyka; we used Arbikie)
1 ounce Kahlúa liqueur
Whipped Cream (page 45), for garnish
Chocolate-covered espresso beans, for garnish (optional)
“Let me explain something to you. I am not Mr. Lebowski. You’re Mr. Lebowski. I’m the Dude. So that’s what you call me. You know, that or, uh, His Dudeness, or uh, Duder, or El Duderino if you’re not into the whole brevity thing.”
—The Dude, from THE BIG LEBOWSKI
“Yeah, we love The Big Lebowski. And we love milkshakes. And we love White Russians. So this is a White Russian milkshake named for our favorite Dude.
In a blender, blend the ice cream, vodka, and Kahlúa together until smooth. Pour the shake into a parfait or pint glass and garnish with whipped cream and chocolate-covered espresso beans, if using.”
Serve with a straw.
Ramos Gin Fizz
4 scoops vanilla ice cream
1½ ounces dry gin (we use Bulldog, but any good dry gin will do; North Sea Scullery used Kirsty’s Gin)
½ ounce fresh lime juice
½ ounce orange flower water
1 tablespoon orange marmalade
Whipped Cream, for garnish
Orange zest, for garnish (optional)
The Ramos gin fizz has always been a favorite of mine, so when it occurred to me to incorporate it into our ice cream cocktail selections, I couldn’t wait. As you can imagine, I had such fun during the R&D phase of this cocktail. After many iterations, we settled on this recipe. I’m especially happy with the texture and extra orange punch provided by the marmalade, while still keeping it traditional with the orange flower water. It’s such a delicious variation on this classic.
—Jen Marshall, Opening Beverage Director & All-Around Rad Chick
“In a blender, blend the ice cream, gin, lime juice, orange flower water, and marmalade until smooth. Pour the shake into a parfait or pint glass and garnish with whipped cream and orange zest, if using. Serve with a straw.”
½ cup (120 ml) whole milk
½ cup (120 ml) Pepsi
Liquor of your choice (optional – North Sea Scullery went vodka)
People often ask why we serve Pepsi instead of Coke. In NYC restaurants, it’s a somewhat unorthodox decision. The reason is simple: Allison grew up in a Pepsi family. Her dad, and his dad before him, drove a Pepsi truck through Brooklyn for many years. Growing up, she had a fridge in her garage that was exclusively stocked with Pepsi and its affiliated soda brands, as special treats for guests and parties (Allison’s mom would rarely let her kids touch the stuff!). When her dad was a kid, his parents used to make him and his sister drink Pepsi milk every morning, and as a result, they both grew up hating it. It sounds utterly bizarre, and it’s just what it sounds like: milk and Pepsi mixed together. But somehow, it works! It’s a creamy, fizzy beverage with a little hit of caffeine, and it’s a fun nonboozy brunch treat—though you can add a shot of booze, if you like, and we won’t judge you!
“Fill a pint glass with ice. Add milk to the halfway mark, then fill it the rest of the way with Pepsi. Add a shot of booze (vodka, rum, brandy, bourbon, and Kahlúa all work), if the mood strikes you.”
Big Huge Thank Yous: Allison & Keavy at Butter & Scotch, Jessica at Abrams & Chronicle, Katie at Arbikie
All images: © Molly Landreth and Jenny Riffle.