Golden Dawn

I recently acquired some apricot brandy and have been on the lookout for cocktails that used it. The first few attempts haven’t been worth the time but the Golden Dawn is kind of fun. Most recipes call for Calvados (an apple brandy, of which I have no real substitutes) but it’s also sometimes made without. Given what I have on hand, I mucked about with it a bit and here’s how I’ve been serving them.

Golden Dawn

  • 3/4 oz gin
  • 1/2 oz apricot brandy
  • 1/2 oz orange juice
  • a dash or two of grenadine

Combine all ingredients except the grenadine and shake with ice. Pour into a cocktail glass and drop the grenadine in. It should sink to the bottom of the glass for nice sunrise effect.

Some folks garnish with an orange slice or cherry, but I prefer without. This is a simple drink, I’d love to try it with an apple brandy to see if it’s a little more complex and interesting, but as is it’s refreshing, sweet but not terribly so and visually kind of fun. Besides, it’s a rare excuse to use that homemade grenadine.


  1. This sounds *a lot* like that drink we used to make at Earlham, but I know that one had creme de menthe, in addition to grenadine and brandy and gin and orange juice. Not that we ever drank at Earlham, because Earlham’s is a dry campus. But what was that one with the creme de menthe? Which was, um, virgin creme de menthe?

  2. Earlham was a dry campus because, years ago, someone was smart enough to realize what terrible things college students would do to good alcohol. That being said, it was probably all crap alcohol except the gin. The “Golden Dawn” is unlike any such drink in that there is both a modicum of moderation and a nice taste.

    Although now I’m curious, did we make such a thing more than once?

  3. We did, because we had so many bottles and it was fun to pour lots of them into a single glass. I think the drink had “cardinal” in the name. It’s definitely in your bartenders book.