We're closing out the 9-Bottle Bar's month-long look at rum with the recipe for a drink aptly named for the occasion.
The alphabet-ending XYZ Cocktail appeared in the famous Savoy Cocktail Book, by bartender Harry Craddock, first published in 1930. Another drink, a riff on the Perfect Martini, was also known by the same name around the same time — but here we're interested Craddock's concoction, which resembles the Sidecar in construction except that rum stands in for cognac.
The XYZ Cocktail is a great formula — simply rum, orange liqueur, and lemon juice — for experimenting with how different rum varieties can influence a drink's flavor profile. There are only three ingredients, so it's easy for the notes of the rum — anything from dry and crisp to funky to aged and robust might work well — to shine through in the final product. If you have a few rums on hand, try making the XYZ Cocktail with all of them to find your preference.
The XYZ Cocktail
1 1/2 ounces rum
3/4 ounces orange liqueur
3/4 ounces lemon juice
Combine all the ingredients in a Boston shaker or cocktail shaker. Add ice and shake vigorously for 10 seconds. Strain the contents into a chilled cocktail glass.