Go Gold For New Year’s Eve: Premium Pre-Mixed Cocktail Keeps Things Classy as an Alternative to Champagne
If you’re looking to try something other than champagne this New Year’s Eve and have a relatively high budget, we recommend Sunday’s Finest Gold Fashioned for something delicious and a decent bit cheaper than Dom Perignon.
Priced at $150 for a 750-milliliter bottle, the Gold Fashioned is a luxury drink that doesn’t profess to be otherwise.
The Gold Fashioned is a global concoction, with ingredients sourced from around the world. The demerara sugar is from Malawi, and the bitters include saffron from Afghanistan, vanilla from Tahiti, cacao from Ecuador, gentian from France and orange peel from Seville. The sugar and bitters mingle splendidly with a blend of eight-year Kentucky straight bourbon and five-year Indiana straight rye whiskey.
The inclusion of rye in a traditionally bourbon-exclusive cocktail proves to have been a wonderful idea; the spiciness of the rye serves as a superb foil to the warm, sweet, corn-forward bourbon.
Be warned: At 42.2% ABV, the Gold Fashioned is far from a syrupy sweet cocktail. If you gravitate toward stiffer drinks, this is for you.
After removing the Gold Fashioned from the blue-with-gold-trim box that houses it, simply pour the golden liquid over ice and give it a single spray from the small bottle of orange zest atomizer that accompanies the drink. The Gold Fashioned is very good initially, but the orange zest really completes it. Thanks to that touch, you won’t notice the absence of the traditional orange peel that would accompany an Old Fashioned served at a cocktail bar. Give the drink a taste before and after spraying the atomizer to note the difference. If you intend to nose the cocktail, be sure to do so before spraying, as the orange scent totally overpowers the aroma of the cocktail.
This is very good, certainly the best pre-mixed cocktail I’ve tried. It’s remarkably smooth. The rye-bourbon base makes it what it is, the artfully chosen ingredients add depth, and the orange atomizer ties everything together.
Sunday’s Finest Gold Fashioned comes from Robert Haynes, whose rèsumè includes head bartender at Chicago’s The Violet Hour, co-founder of Apologue Liqueurs and the mind behind R. Franklin’s Bësk.
Is the $150 Price Tag Too High?
Whether the Gold Fashioned is worth $150 depends on your budget and priorities. Could you make a very good Old Fashioned at home for much less? Of course. But it almost certainly won’t be quite as objectively good as this. Remember, this recipe comes from Haynes, a seasoned mixologist whose expertise is made apparent by the exquisite balance of flavors in the Gold Fashioned.
The instructions call for two ounces of Gold Fashioned per glass. If you stick to that portion, the bottle will net you 12.7 servings, coming out to about $11.81 per glass. That’s pricy, yes, but not as much as it would be to drink a luxury Old Fashioned at a swanky bar. Cocktails start at $16, for example, at Haynes’ old bar, The Violet Hour.
It’s more expensive than the average home cocktail but less pricy than buying a nice drink on the town, especially when you factor in the money you save on tips and transport. That’s the point, of course; the Gold Fashioned isn’t meant to be your usual budget cocktail. It transports the luxury atmosphere of a downtown cocktail bar to the den of your home. This is for when you want something special, whether for a party or just as an occasional after-work treat.
All in all, this is delicious and perfect for a New Year’s Eve party. It’s a solid party centerpiece, a talking point. “You’ve got to try this pre-mixed Old Fashioned; it’s made of ingredients from six continents,” you might boast to your guests, who are sure to be impressed by the presentation, especially the elegant box, golden cap and orange zest atomizer, and flavor.
Get the Gold Fashioned while it’s available; this initial release is estimated to include only 9,000 bottles. You can grab one at thegoldfashioned.com for $150 plus shipping, and shipping is free if you buy two or more bottles.
We look forward to seeing what Haynes has up his sleeve next — under the Sunday’s Finest label or otherwise.
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