When you have a bunch of people over at your house who don’t necessarily know each other, it’s important to get them a little lubed up with some alcohol. One of the most important components of a dinner party is the alcoholic beverage. Wine is all good, but I like to serve a cocktail. Obviously, I don’t want to leave my whole bar cart out and let people just ransack it because there’s some good stuff on there. As such, I like to pre-batch one really good cocktail that I know everyone will enjoy, stick it in the freezer, and then pour them out as needed. So today, we’re gonna be making an American Trilogy, which is one of my favorite rye whiskey cocktails. Got a decent rye whiskey. Applejack—you want at least 100 proof. Get bonded if you can. And then also some really nice honey syrup, which is three parts honey to one part water. If you were to make an individual cocktail just for yourself, which you should totally do ’cause you deserve it, you would just add an ounce of each one of these and then just a scant quarter ounce of the honey syrup, stir it over a nice big rock so it’s nice and diluted and chilled, and then pour it over into a lowball glass with another rock. But since we’re scaling up, we’re not gonna get that dilution that we would get from stirring each cocktail over ice, so we’re gonna have to add in extra water. (bottle pops) That’s a wonderful sound. Dump that in. (liquor pouring) That’s also a very nice sound. You’re gonna be using a full 750-milliliter bottle here. Same thing with your applejack. Glug that in there. Then you’re gonna add about 6 ounces of honey syrup. Give that a stir. Then we’re gonna take our ethanol and pour that into the water. So for each cocktail that you’re serving, you’re gonna want about three-quarters of an ounce of water, but since we’re gonna be serving this cocktail over an ice cube, it will dilute even more as your guests are drinking it. So now we’re just gonna pour it into our jar or bottle. Either will work. All right, now we’re just gonna seal this up. Now we’re just gonna pop this in the freezer. Don’t worry, it won’t freeze. There’s enough alcohol in there to prevent that. OK, so my guests are starting to arrive, which means we need to break out the booze. Our cocktail is nice and chilly, exactly where we want it. We’re gonna pour it over ice, which is further gonna dilute it as the guest drinks it. If you’re not very good at pouring, you can funnel this back into one of the bottles. And now we’re gonna finish it with a little bit of bitters. The reason we’re doing this now, and not earlier when we pre-batched the cocktail, is that the flavor of bitters can actually get muted if you add it too early. So just a couple dashes. Boom, boom. And you can let your guests do this. Just have a couple different bottles of bitters out. And for the final touch: Take a nice, big strip of zest, and you just want to squeeze it. Get those good tasty oils directly in there. Give it a little stir—you can use the zest to do this. You’re ready to serve your drink. That’s very good. Everyone’s gonna like that.