The morning glory is a classic cocktail with attitude. This recipe is adapted from the 1887 edition of Jerry Thomas' "Bar-Tenders Guide" and is said to be one of the "hair of the dog" hangover cures from back in the day. It definitely packs a punch—in both flavor and alcohol—and if you're indeed drinking it in the morning, you might not want to have a lot planned for your day.
This is actually an amazing little drink. The cocktail combines a spicy rye whiskey with a smooth cognac ("brandy" was suggested by Thomas) with a whole host of flavor accents. These include the sweet citrus taste of orange curaçao, the fizziness of club soda, a hint of bitters, and a kiss of absinthe. Originally, it used gomme syrup, though simple syrup is standard today.
These flavors span the spectrum of the bar and the drink can easily become unbalanced if too much of one ingredient is used. This is especially true for the absinthe, so measuring each ingredient out properly is key to creating a great morning glory cocktail.
Gather the ingredients.
In a mixing glass filled with ice, pour the rye whiskey, cognac, curaçao, simple syrup, absinthe, and bitters.
Stir well, for at least 30 seconds.
Top with club soda; as much as 2 ounces to taste.
Twist a lemon peel over the glass and drop it into the drink.
Serve and enjoy!
Top-shelf spirits will make a better cocktail. Choose a good rye whiskey and cognac that you enjoy straight and you'll set a nice foundation for this drink.
Most cocktail recipes that are this old have more than a few variations. Here are some of the more popular options, which you can use to customize the drink to your personal taste:
- Some recipes skip the whiskey, opting for cognac alone at the same 1-ounce pour.
- Use 1/2 teaspoon of sugar instead of the simple syrup.
- You can also go with tradition and pour gomme syrup instead.
- Switch from orange curaçao to Grand Marnier.
- Pour a little sparkling wine rather than the club soda.
- Serve this drink up in a cocktail glass with or without ice.
How Strong Is a Morning Glory Cocktail?
If you're really going to drink the morning glory before noon, it's definitely going to wake you up! When made with 80-proof whiskey and brandy, this cocktail mixes up to 23 percent ABV (46 proof). That's totally normal for drinks of this style and vintage, though it's important to keep in mind that it's very potent.