Like any red-blooded American, Gut Check uses liquid medication to cope with holiday stress. Not only does a good winter cocktail make it possible to tolerate family members, say, inquiring about your procreation plans, it helps keep you warm, too. From now until Christmas, we're calling upon local drink-slingers to suggest great cocktails to get you through the season. Some of them are holiday-themed, some traditional, some not so much, but they all share one common thread: delicious potency.
The .38 Special was created by Matt Seiter of Sanctuaria (4198 Manchester Avenue; 314-535-9700) on November 19, 2009, when he hosted a group of St. Louis city cops for the restaurant's soft opening. His crime-fighting customers drank him out of Bud Light, so he began serving pitchers of the unnamed drink featuring cinnamon syrup, rum and the secret ingredient: allspice dram. Named by an officer for its ability to do more damage than anticipated, the cocktail is sweet, spicy and smooth enough to wreak havoc even on St. Louis' law enforcement.
.38 Special 1.5 oz Smith & Cross Rum .5 oz lemon juice .5 oz lime juice .5 oz cinnamon syrup .5 oz Marie Brizard White Creme de Cacao Dash of allspice dram
Shake all with ice and strain into a Collins glass. Top with club soda and garnish with a lime wedge.