Croatia Week: Mirroring Cocktail Recipe

Croatia Week: Mirroring Cocktail Recipe

Croatia Week: Mirroring 

We recently tended bar for a Harvard Kennedy School of Government alumni event held at the Croatian embassy. It was sort of a reunion of participants in Ronald Heifetz’s crazily popular class on Adaptive Leadership. We designed custom cocktails for the event, using Croatian liquor for the ingredients and Adaptive Leadership catchphrases for the names. Today, we give you Mirroring.

As we mentioned yesterday, brandy is the big spirit in Croatia. They drink it straight, but we make cocktails. So, for this drink we split the difference, with a variation of the old fashioned that would highlight the specific qualities of the brandy.

By the way, while in Croatia you can apparently find homemade brandy in most every home, outside of Croatia, it–and Croatian liquor in general–can be a little hard to find. Here in DC, Georgetown’s Potomac Wine & Spirits proved invaluable to us in finding it; they had a fairly good selection in stock, and were able to find some other things for us. If you are trying to replicate the Croatian aspect of these cocktails, I hope you’re as lucky to have a great local store to work with. If you’re not, I suppose you can use boring, old French brandy.


  • 1.5 oz Badel Zrinski brandy
  • muddled grapes
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 dash bitters
  • 1 oz seltzer
  • a basil leaf, for garnish


  • muddle the grapes, sugar, and bitters on the bottom of a glass
  • add the brandy and stir to dissolve sugar
  • add ice and top with seltzer
  • garnish with basil

Roberts & June