Empire Line [Cocktail Recipe]

“Fall is my favorite time of the year for live music. The Empire Line cocktail is named for a song from the upcoming fall release from The National. The drink emulates the song with its depth and richness,” says Steva Casey, bartender at The Atomic Lounge in Birmingham, AL. “Making a spiced syrup with brown sugar adds depth to your drink and is a wonderful enhancement for scotch.”


  • 1½ oz. blended scotch
  • ½ oz. dry vermouth
  • ½ oz. pear-allspice syrup (recipe below)
  • 1 oz. lemon juice
  • 2 dashes Angostura bitters
  • 2 oz. club soda
  • Garnish: fresh pear slices


Combine all ingredients except club soda in a shaker with ice. Shake until chilled. Strain into a Collins glass with ice. Top with soda. Garnish with pear slices.

How to make Pear-Allspice Syrup

  • 1 cup pear juice
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground allspice

Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan. Simmer until sugar is dissolved. Allow to cool. Strain and store in a glass bottle in the fridge for up to two weeks.

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