The flavor will debut at the sold-out Full Disclosure Live: A Night with Nightingale this Thursday evening. The live event, hosted by Roben Farzad and broadcast on local NPR radio stations, will showcase Nightingale owners Xavier Meers and Hannah Pollack.
“Nightingale makes the best ice cream sandwiches around, and we like to think we make the best bourbon around,” says Jay Carpenter, co-owner and distiller at Reservoir Distillery. “It was a natural joining of forces.”
Carpenter worked with Meers and Pollack to develop the new flavor. It wasn’t as simple as dumping a Manhattan’s mix of bourbon, sweet vermouth and cherry syrup into an ice cream base.
“It’s a fine line because ice cream and alcohol don’t play well together,” Carpenter says. “Alcohol doesn’t freeze.” The partners also wanted an alcohol-free ice cream sandwich that non-drinkers and children could eat.
Although the commercial version is alcohol-free, Meers says the pair also experimented with an adult version that has actual bourbon.
“Of course we had to make something a little different for us,” Meers laughs. “We have a private collection.”
The Manhattan Cherry fits right into the decadent line of sandwiches that Nightingale is fast becoming nationally known for. The rich ice cream is tinged pinkish purple and studded with chunks of dark cherry. It’s nestled between two crispy brown-sugar cookies.
If the flavor isn’t bourbon-forward enough for you, Meers and Carpenter suggest pairing it with Reservoir’s new Hunter & Scott Rye, also being released today, and available by special order at ABC stores.
Look for Manhattan cherry sandwiches next week in stores and at Reservoir’s tasting room.