We know D.C. Get our free newsletter to stay in the know.
What: Buttery Tipple with brown butter-washed Woodford Reserve bourbon, muddled sage, and Amaro Borsci
Where: Sixth Engine, 438 Massachusetts Ave. NW
What You Should Be Drinking Many shudder at the memory of ordering a round of buttery nipple shots at the bar. The bachelor party shooter typically contains butterscotch schnapps and Baileys Irish Cream. Sixth Engine Bar Manager Donato Alvarez liked the shot’s “over-the-top richness” but had to class it up for the restaurant’s clientele. Enter the Buttery Tipple, made with brown butter-washed Woodford Reserve, muddled sage, and a rinse of Amaro Borsci. Alvarez browns the butter on low heat behind the bar before adding it to the bourbon with a vigorous shake. The concoction then vacations in the freezer where the fat congeals, separating itself from the alcohol to make straining a cinch. “You essentially get a big, fat butter waffle,” Alvarez explains. Sixth Engine chef Kyle Bailey says he’s hoarding the bourbon butter for fall desserts.
Why You Should Be Drinking it Even though only butter flavor, not butter fat, makes its way into the final cocktail, Alvarez says customers shy away from it. “They’re probably expecting a big pad of butter with oil floating around, but it actually drinks very clean,” he says. While a buttery nipple may be the inspiration, the drink is actually more akin to a mint julep. Sage, plucked from the planters out front, plays the role of mint in brightening up an otherwise boozy drink. Only Amaro Borsci, with its bitter pancake syrup flavor, is required to round out the herbaceous drink that tastes like a bakery smells. Alvarez recommends pairing the cocktail with the pork loin and black pepper spaetzle dish, because the caramelized meat matches the drink’s flavors.