Remember when Jim Meehan helped Danny Brown create his own signature cocktail?

Yeah, that was awesome. And now you can not only recreate that cocktail—named after Danny’s mixtape, “The Hybrid“—at home, but also pick up some tips on kicking your holiday shindig up to the next level.

We gave Meehan a bottle of Jay Z’s D’USSE cognac and asked him to show us how make two cocktails to satisfy different types of drinkers at a party—the ones looking for something sour and refreshing, and ones who prefer something dark and boozy.

He demonstrated the approach that he and his crew often take to creating drinks with new spirits at PDT—essentially, taking classic cocktails and swapping in different ingredients, Mr. Potato Head-style, that will play a similar role. The Danny-approved Hyrbid is a play on the Last Word, a gin cocktail invented the Detroit Athletic Club in the 1920s. And the boozier cocktail is simply an Old-Fashioned that subs in cognac for the usual whiskey. Both drinks seek to highlight the rich, nutty qualities

Watch the video above to see Meehan demonstrate both cocktails, then check out the recipes—and the tasting that inspired “The Hybrid”—below.

“The Hybrid” (a.k.a., the Danny Brown cocktail)

  • 2 ounces cognac
  • ¾ ounce lemon juice
  • ½ ounce Amaretto
  • ½ ounce Roulot Apricot Liqueur

Combine cognac, lemon juice, Amaretto, and apricot liqueur in cocktail shaker. (Multiply the quantities by however many cocktails you want to make—in the video above, Meehan doubles the recipe in each shaker to make four drinks.) Add ice and shake vigorously. Strain and serve.


Cognac Old-Fashioned

  • 1 sugar cube, or simple syrup
  • 2 dashes of Angostura bitters
  • 2 ounces of cognac (or more if you’re feeling frisky)

Combine sugar, bitters, and cognac in a mixing glass. Add ice, stir vigorously (about 30 seconds), then strain over a large ice cube.

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