All aboard the Pineapple Express

The world of craft cocktails has continued to explode over the past decade with regional distilleries and homegrown ingredients becoming more and more available to local liquid craftsmen. Centuries old classics like The Aviation and Sazerac are breathing new life while crafty barkeeps are inventing their own combinations that they hope later generations years from now will call “their drink.”

Enter: The Pineapple Express. 


Actually, rewind.

ENTER: Margaux Taylor. She’s been tending bar for 15 years and has helped open numerous cocktail-centric locations around Portland. Now, she's the resident cocktail maven at Hotel Rose, creating the bourbon-based Pineapple Express from behind the bar at in-house restaurant Bottle + Kitchen.



“This cocktail is as a ‘50s style Old Fashioned,” says Margaux.

Okay, what’s that mean?

“There are two styles of the Old Fashioned, and the ‘50s version muddles the fruit, but I’ve replaced the orange with pineapple. Since I first discovered Amarena cherries years ago I have never touched a maraschino bar cherry.  Amarena's are beautiful natural cherries preserved in a syrup of their own.

“My favorite aspect of this cocktail is how well-balanced it is. I was first scared it would be overly sweet, but the bitters really does a nice job of balancing it all out. It is also very approachable and enjoyed by bourbon drinkers as well as more timid drinkers.”

But what if you’re a confident self-taught mixologist who wants to make it at home?!

“The problem you would run into with making this is the Caramelized Pineapple Puree. There is only a little used in each drink, but it makes a big difference. You could make and store your own puree, but it would be time intensive.”

So, I guess that means you should just skip all that, and head to a Staypineapple location that serves the Pineapple Express! Currently, you can find Margaux’s creation at Hotel Rose’s restaurant Bottle+Kitchen in Portland, The Maxwell Hotel in Seattle, The Alise Chicago, and The Alise San Francisco.

Full ingredients list below:

1 1/2 oz bourbon
1/2 oz caramelized pineapple puree
3 Amarena cherries
1 barspoon Amarena cherry juice
2 pineapple chunks
4 shakes whiskey barrel aged bitters
splash soda

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