Food & dining

From the Bar

From the Bar: Get playful around the Campfire

The Campfire at the Ritz-Carlton’s Avery Bar.
Liza Weisstuch for The Boston Globe
The Campfire at the Ritz-Carlton’s Avery Bar.

Whew, bet you’re glad that’s over. But while the pomp and pressure of Valentine’s Day may be behind us, the beer-drenched shadow of St. Patrick’s Day looming in the none-too-distant weeks is enough to make you curl up on your couch and dream of commercialized-holiday-free August. These weeks call for a decidedly fancy-free drink — one that doesn’t take itself too seriously yet has all the elegant oomph that a winter warmer calls for. The Campfire, a playful whiskey drink at the handsome Avery Bar at the Ritz-Carlton, is essentially an eccentric Old Fashioned, formulated with peaty Islay single malt scotch — or bourbon, if you prefer sweet to smoke — then sweetened with maple syrup and tied together with chocolate and walnut bitters. At the bar it’s a spectacle drink, what with the bartender torching the marshmallow, as if to authenticate the whimsy factor, but at home, keep it drama-free and just smoke it over a flame, campfire style, then settle in and dream of holiday-free August. Liza Weisstuch


Makes 1 drink


3 graham crackers

Get The Weekender in your inbox:
The Globe's top picks for what to see and do each weekend, in Boston and beyond.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

1 teaspoon sugar

1 ounce simple syrup (to make syrup: in a small saucepan over low heat, heat equal parts sugar and water just until sugar melts)

1½ ounces bourbon or single malt Islay scotch

¼ ounce maple syrup


2 dashes chocolate bitters

1 dash black walnut bitters

1 marshmallow, toasted

1. Pulverize graham crackers. In a shallow bowl, mix fine graham cracker crumbs with sugar. Wet the rim of a rocks glass with simple syrup and plunge into the mix. Set aside.

2. Pour whiskey, maple syrup, chocolate bitters, and walnut bitters into a mixing glass over ice. Stir for 45 seconds.


3. Strain into the rimmed rocks glass. Garnish with a speared toasted marshmallow.

Adapted from Avery Bar at the Ritz-Carlton

Liza Weisstuch can be reached at Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @livingtheproof.