The Carlton ($12)
Named after the street on which the restaurant resides, this riff on a classic Martini cocktail brings together equal parts gin and dry vermouth, along with a splash of absinthe and orange bitters. “What I love is that it comes out crystal clear," he says. "It’s a delicate, elegant drink.”
Old Fashioned ($10)
“I’m not necessarily for one or the other—sometimes I like it with the muddled fruit,” says White of his stance on the great debate about the so-called “proper” preparation of an Old Fashioned. And, fittingly, his rendition toes the line between the two camps.
He starts with a heavy dose of Angostura orange bitters—six dashes compared to the standard 2 or 3, orange because it’s his favorite—which gets muddled with 2 sugar cubes and a little water. He then stirs in W.L. Weller 12-Year bourbon, and garnishes with an orange wedge and a pair of bourbon-soaked Italian cherries. Some of that steeping liquid makes it into the glass, too, adding flavor while the fruit remains intact.
Rum Daiquiri ($10)
“Just rum, sugar, and lime juice—if you use the right silver rum, there’s very little you have to do it,” says White confidently. In this case, the “right” rum is Flor de Caña 4-year extra dry, which he finds has a subtle coconut flavor that pairs well with the bright tartness of the fresh lime juice. The simple mélange is shaken and served up. To garnish, he uses what he calls a “twist knife” to form a springy coil of lime zest over the glass, releasing those precious, flavorful essential oils.
Moscow Mule ($10)
Instead of the traditional ginger beer, White uses a one-two punch of muddled ginger and housemade ginger syrup to give his Mule that characteristic pop of spice. To that he adds Fever Tree club soda, fresh lime juice, and Luksusowa vodka. “We like to find more off-market brands that are still very good,” White notes.
Blackberry Margarita ($12)
If you happen to be sitting at the bar when you order this off-the-menu seasonal concoction, be sure to pay attention to White’s technique for rimming the glass with that thick ribbon of salt. After wetting the rim with lime, he arranges a row of salt on a small wooden cutting board, like something out of a Scarface scene, then swiftly rolls the top of the glass down the center of the pile. In this thickly salted glass he pairs slightly smoky Chinaco blanco tequila with a couple big blackberries, lime juice, a pinch of salt, and just a touch of triple sec to create a super-juicy summertime refresher.