You Need to Try This Classic Song-Inspired Cocktail in Chinatown

You Need To Try This is a running archive of all the awesome drinks and delicious dishes we’ve come across over the course of our professional and private lives.

First recorded by James Carr in 1967, Dark End of the Street is a beautiful soul song which has inspired many an artist to perform their own cover of the classic. The song is said to have been written by Dan Penn and Chips Moman between hands during a card game in Memphis in 1966.

Since then, everyone from Aretha Franklin to Cat Power have felt drawn to share their own renditions. It’s only fitting then, that a song that attracted so many would one day inspire a cocktail in its honour, one that was a “cover” in its own right — a play on a classic Boulevardier.

Created by Kissa Tanto Bar Manager Derek Boone, the Dark End Of The Street incorporates Japanese whisky, plum wine, Cynar, bitters and lemon oil. It gently nods to its inspiration while standing firmly on own as a unique rendering of the classic. Boone adjusts the ratios of a Boulevardier (which traditionally calls for equal parts whisky, sweet vermouth and Campari) to create balance in a drink that might otherwise fall on the sweet side. The result is a complex cocktail, the perfect sipper to pair with pretty much any recording of its musical namesake.

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