Jerry dates Bette Midler's understudy, Kramer fawns over Bette, Elaine brings George's father to her Korean manicurist.
In the Seinfeld episode “The Understudy”, Jerry dates Bette Midler’s understudy in the musical Rochelle Rochelle. Aside from Kramer’s rant about broadway in the episode mirroring how we feel about the bar industry, the episode title makes a great name for a second fiddle cocktail. If the Whiskey Sour is the Bette Midler of cocktails, then this is her understudy.
The Understudy is based on one of the first variations we ever attempted — the addition of lavender bitters to a whiskey sour. Lemon cordial is used for sweetness. The Understudy is very similar to a whiskey sour in flavour, with more botanical elements from the cordial and bitters. We were originally planning a different whiskey original cocktail with lemon cordial, but it wasn’t working, so we switched to this one. The Understudy is always the bridesmaid, never the bride, but bridesmaids have more fun, right?
What you need
- 2 oz. bourbon whiskey
- 1 oz. lemon cordial
- 0.5 oz. lemon Juice
- 2 dashes Scrappy’s lavender bitters
- egg white
How it’s made
Shake the lemon juice, lemon cordial, and egg white in a cocktail shaker without ice for about 20 seconds. Add ice, bourbon, and lavender bitters and shake again normally. Strain into a coupe glass.
Making lemon cordial (lime cordial’s understudy) is just as easy as making lime cordial was. Zest 6-8 lemons and set the zest aside. Juice all the lemons. Weigh out an equivalent amount of sugar. Pour lemon juice and sugar into a sealable container and add zest. Seal, shake until sugar is dissolved, and leave to infuse. After 24 hours, strain out the zest with a fine mesh strainer. It should keep in the fridge for a month or two. If you find it goes bad, add a teaspoon of vodka when you make it. The alcohol will help it keep longer and it’s the best use for vodka we’ve found. It’s certainly better than actually using vodka as a base in cocktails.