The Night Terror Cocktail

The night terror cocktail.
Photo by Tom Arena

Courtesy Max Green, senior barman, Amor y Amargo, New York City

Leonetto Cappiello, widely regarded as the father of modern advertising, created this iconic image in 1906. The “green devil” in this poster represents absinthe, which Maurin made until its production was outlawed in the U.S. in 1912. After that, the brand created cherry-flavored Maurin Quina, which still exists today.

The Night Terror 

A wine infused with wild cherries and quinine, and fortified by a touch of cherry brandy, Maurin Quina has a flavor some liken to cherry marzipan. For this recipe, Green riffed on a Black Manhattan to showcase Maurin’s cherry note.

“When making this cocktail, I was thinking about the devil’s prominence on the bottle and in this poster,” says Green. Another bottle on the shelf seemed a perfect fit. “According to legend, Empress Catherine the Great of Russia became ill during a visit to Latvia, but was cured after drinking Riga Black Balsam, ‘saving her from the devil, in essence.’ ”

Cocktails Inspired by Vintage Advertising
  • 1 ½ ounces Wild Turkey 101 Rye
  • 1 ounce Maurin Quina
  • ½ ounce Riga Black Balsam liqueur (can substitute Fernet)
  • 2 dashes Bittercube Blackstrap Bitters
  • Fresh thyme or thin curl of lime peel, for garnish (optional)

Add all ingredients into mixing glass. Stir, then strain into chilled coupe glass. Garnish with sprig of thyme or lime peel laid across the rim of the glass, if desired.

Published on April 5, 2018
About the Author
Kara Newman 
Spirits Editor

Kara Newman reviews spirits and writes about spirits and cocktail trends for Wine Enthusiast. She’s the author of several cocktail books, including Shake.Stir.Sip., NIGHTCAP: More than 40 Cocktails to Close Out Any Evening and Cocktails With a Twist, released August 2019. Email:

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