Boston Flip


You all know that I love the idea of a nightcap, a small drink soon before bedtime.  If I am feeling particularly lazy then, instead of making a cocktail, I reach for Madeira, a fortified wine, which is not only great on its own, but also is quite versatile in cocktails.  Madeira generally offers some level of sweetness (see below for a fuller discussion) along with chocolate, nut, and/or dried fruit notes.  These flavors work very well with rye, which provides a hefty kick of peppery-ness and spice.  The Boston Flip combines both into a delicious and smooth cocktail.


1 1/2 ounces rye

1 1/2 ounces Madeira

1 egg

1/4 ounce rich (2:1) simple syrup

Combine all ingredients in a shaker without ice.  Shake vigorously for a minute.  Open the shaker and add ice.  Shake again.  Strain into a coupe.  Garnish with freshly grated nutmeg.

This is the first "flip" which I have posted.  By now you have gathered that I love egg whites in cocktails.  "Flips" are a class of cocktails that call for a whole egg.  That's right.  The entire raw egg.  Before you dismiss it as some sort of Rocky Balboa-esque training regimen, entire raw eggs have been used in cocktails for quite some time.  In fact, Jerry Thomas's 1862 book How to Mix Drinks contained a number of recipes for flips.  And also remember that raw eggs are consumed in egg nog during the holiday season.  So why an entire egg?  Well an entire egg changes the texture of a drink entirely.  It will make a cocktail thicker, richer, and smoother.  Since you are using an entire raw egg, remember that freshness is key.  Also, similar to using egg whites, a dry shake is needed to emulsify the egg.  For more information on a dry shake see my post on egg whites

The Boston Flip calls for Madeira, which I mentioned is a fortified wine.  Madeira is one of the oldest alcoholic beverages.  In fact, George Washington, in a letter dated 1759, requested 126 gallons of it!  Madeira is named such for the Portuguese island of Madeira, which was the last port of call for ships heading to the New World.  Since Madeira is fortified, it was able to make the transatlantic voyage without spoiling (higher alcohol content = decreased spoilage; hence, why you should refrigerate vermouth but liquor can stay at room temp).  Madeiras range in levels of sweetness.  From driest to sweetest, the varieties are: Sercial, Verdelho, Bual, and Malmsey.  I used a Bual Madeira here, but feel free to play around with what you use.

The Boston Flip is definitely a heavy cocktail because of the use of an entire egg.  You may not have more than one of these.  But the kick of the rye, the sweetness of the Madeira, and the texture of the egg will make sure that the one you do have is delicious.  Enjoy!