The Jungle Cat is a riff on the classic Jungle Bird cocktail, with aged gin taking the place of black rum in the original. It’s from the Caledonia Spirits company, makers of Tom Cat gin, a rich amber-colored gin barreled in oak.
Aged gin is a brilliant choice, but it’s the maple syrup that really ties it all together, replicating the rich flavor of the rum in the original and adding a warmth and character that perfectly highlights the unique flavor of aged gin.
As in the original Jungle Bird, Campari or another ultra-bitter citrus apéritif is de rigueur. You can use Aperol, of course, but it will be sweeter and a little less characterful.
Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into an ice-filled short glass. Garnish with pineapple wedges, rings, or fronds – and a cherry or two certainly wouldn’t hurt.
- Jungle Cat recipe from Caledonia Spirits