Rabbits have a bit of a bad rap as pets—they’re often biters, scratchers, and appear cuddlier than they actually are—but they tend to receive an even worse representation in film.
The Killer Rabbit of Caerbannog from Monty Python and The Holy Grail is described as “the most foul, cruel, and bad-tempered rodent you ever set eyes on.”
The perpetually tardy White Rabbit in Alice in Wonderland seems to be the ideal candidate for a Xanax prescription, so frazzled at one point in the film that he can’t tell newcomer Alice from his usual maid Mary Ann.
And then there’s Bugs Bunny. Those irritating catch phrases! That too-cool-for-school attitude! And his nerve-grating nasal tone! Rabbits are best when mute and made out of milk chocolate.
It’s not surprising the theme of a rabbit as a misbehaving little beast is continued in this weekend’s new release Hop, in which a young rabbit decides to shirk his familial responsibility as the Easter Bunny “hare” apparent.
Such a naughty animal might care to indulge in a cocktail (or two). New York-based mixologist Lynnette Marrero has helped shape the cocktail menus at several of NYC’s great bars and restaurants, including Elettaria and Rye House, and now runs her own cocktail catering and event company DRINKSat6. She also serves as President of the New York chapter of LUPEC, the Ladies United for the Preservation of Endangered Cocktails.
We asked her to put her own distinctive twist on the lapine-themed Apple Jack Rabbit recipe, a cocktail originally shaken up at the bar in the famous Savoy Hotel in the 1930s, made with Apple Jack Brandy, lemon juice, orange juice, and maple syrup.
“Spring is about blooming flowers and the return of fresh fruits,” Marrero says. “I wanted to use honey instead of maple syrup because it is more spring-like and could stand up to the intensity of the hops. Florida Honey Tangerines are at their peak season in spring and really complement the flavors of the honey and the hops. The hops themselves have a stone fruit note, and the apricot brandy helps bring out those flavors. And of course it's Easter time and while people are decorating eggs I wanted to use the egg white to make this cocktail a great way to start an Easter Brunch or Hoppy hour.”
Jack Rabbit Hoptail Created by Lynnette Marrero of DRINKSat6
1 1/2 oz Laird’s Bonded Apple Brandy 1/2 oz tangerine juice 1/4 oz lemon juice 1/4 oz apricot brandy (Haus Alpenz, Marie Brizzard or Bols) 1/4 oz hopped honey syrup* 1oz Lagunitas IPA 1 egg white Angostura bitters
Place all ingredients in a shaker, except the IPA and bitters. Dry shake the cocktail with the egg white to emulsify the egg. Add three cubes of ice and shake to chill. Strain into a cocktail glass and top with 1 oz IPA. Release the oil of one lemon on the surface of the cocktail and on the rim of the glass. Garnish with the Angostura bitters in the shape of bunny ears (use a dropper for easier art application).
*The Hopped honey syrup is 2 parts wildflower honey to 1 part water infused with Sorachi hops (1 tsp ground hops to every 8 oz water). To infuse the water with hops, heat water to a simmer. Remove from heat and add hops. Stir until dissolved. Add 2 parts honey to the "hop water.” Hops are available at Whole Foods. Try different varieties to slightly alter the flavor.
Brody Brown has studied fashion crimes, examined social issues, and carefully considered cocktails in Montreal and New York. He now continues his exploration in Los Angeles, where he writes about spirits, music, LGBT subjects, entertainment and nightlife.