For this season, Benny's Chop House tickles your palate with a collection of several new creations to please every taste and mood. The State Escape ($12) is the newest version of the popular "Black Widow." The cocktail starts with Moon Mountain Citrus Vodka and sparkling wine, to which is added Mango-Mint Puree and lemon, and it's served with a mint garnish. It's sweet, light and refreshing with mango as a winter fruit.
The Aquavit Mule ($12) features Russian Standard Vodka and North Shore
Aquavit, blended with House Spiced Apple Syrup and lemon. Barrit's Ginger Beer adds some sparkling sizzle to the cocktail, which is served with a cinnamon stick garnish. It's on the lighter side and slightly sweet, with bits of fruit and spice and ginger overtones.
Ian's Demise ($12) is sweet, chocolaty cocktail that begins with House Brose (12-year old Chivas infused with oatmeal and maple syrup). Then, with a dash of cream and a swirl of Chef Aaron's House Dark Chocolate Syrup, plus two dashes of Benny's Birch Bark Bitters and maple whipped cream, this becomes a smoky, rich treat.
No holiday celebration would be complete without a creamy egg creation, and Benny's Snow Leopard ($12) is a light and balanced drink that fills the bill wonderfully. The cocktail begins with Pisco Porton (a Peruvian white spirit) and lemon, to which is added house-made vanilla pear syrup, egg white and a topping of grated nutmeg. There are easy citrus notes, a slight bit of fruit and a touch of holiday spice.
Hot Buttered Rum ($13) is a holiday-time perennial favorite and Benny's interpretation of this soothing hot beverage is nothing short of spectacular. Starting with Journeyman Rum and hot water, a scoop of House Butter Mix (butter, sugar, cream and baking spices) is added and then all is topped with rich Maple Whipped Cream and garnished with a cinnamon stick. It's creamy and rich, sweet and hot, but not too filling.
The Daniel Craig ($13) is a salute to Mr. Bond, a refreshing play on the Vesper, the classic James Bond drink. It features Zubrowska Vodka and North Shore Gin #11, blended with Lillet Rosé and a touch of Rosemary. It has complex herbal and distinctly juniper notes.
Next, Benny's presents the Breckenridge Side Car ($13), a cognac lover's dream, starting with Pierre Ferrand Ambre and Dry Curacao, blended with lemon juice, Breckenridge Bitter Liquor and simple syrup, and served with a lemon twist garnish. This is Benny's take on the classic Sidecar and it's refreshing, tart, herbal and citrusy.
Finally, in homage to Santa Claus himself, comes the Old (Spiced) St. Nick ($13), featuring Buffalo Trace Bourbon and North Shore Silver Lining blended with brown sugar and an added touch of St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram. In honor of Rudolph, the cocktail is garnished with a
red cherry. It's a smooth cocktail with a bit of spice.
Wine lovers shouldn't forget that Benny's Chop House also features a refined, expertly chosen collection of wines from the world's great wine-making regions. Simply ask your very knowledgeable server for advice in choosing the perfect wine to go with your dinner selection.
BENNY'S CHOP HOUSE SPECIAL COCKTAILS FOR HOLIDAY 2012 - RECIPES
The State Escape
• 2 oz. House Mango-Mint Puree (Mango Puree from European Imports, reduced with sugar and a handful of mint, strained)
• .75 oz. Moon Mountain Citrus Vodka
• Dash Lemon
• 2.5 to 3 oz. Sparkling Wine
• Mint Garnish
• 1 oz. North Shore Aquavit
• 1 oz. Russian Standard Vodka
• .5 oz. House Spiced Apple Syrup (Two chopped apples, reduced in simple syrup, with added spices)
• .5 oz. Lemon
• 1.5-2 oz. Barrit's Ginger Beer
• Cinnamon Stick Garnish
• 1 oz. House Brose (Chivas 12 year infused with oatmeal and maple syrup)
• Dash Cream
• -Swirl of Chef Aaron's House Dark Chocolate Syrup
• 2 Dashes Benny's Birch Bark Bitters
• Maple Whipped Cream
• Hot Water
• 2 oz. Pisco Porton
• .75 oz. Lemon
• 1 oz. House Vanilla Pear Syrup
• Egg White
• Top with grated nutmeg
Breckenridge Side Car
• 1.5 oz. Pierre Ferrand Ambre
• 1 oz. Dry Curacao
• 1 oz. Lemon Juice
• .5 oz. Breckenridge Bitter Liquor
• .5 oz. Simple Syrup
• Lemon Twist Garnish
Hot Buttered Rum
• 1.5 oz. Journeyman Rum
• Scoop of House Butter Mix (butter, sugar, cream, baking spices)
• Hot Water
• Maple Whipped Cream
• Cinnamon Stick
Old (Spiced) St. Nick
• 2 oz. Buffalo Trace Bourbon
• .5 oz. North Shore Silver Lining
• .5 oz. Brown Sugar Syrup
• Dash of St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram (Approx. 7 drops)
• Garnish with a Cherry
About Benny's Chop House
Benny's Chop House, located at 444 N. Wabash Ave. in Chicago, IL 60611, serves 100% USDA Prime natural, dry-aged and wet-aged steaks and other cuisine in a sophisticated setting. The restaurant is open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner. Hours are 11 a.m. to midnight. The bar and lounge remains open an hour later. Live music is presented Wednesdays and Thursdays, 7 p.m. to 11 p.m., and Fridays and Saturdays, 7:30 to 11:30 p.m. For more information contact Benny's at (312) 626-2444 or visit www.bennyschophouse.com.