It’s Friday … Have a Drink: Bijou

bijou cocktail
It’s Friday … Have a Drink: Bijou
Our weekly recommendation.

This nearly forgotten classic was supposedly invented by Harry Johnson in the late 1800s, and is listed in his seminal work, the Bartenders Manual, a tome which provides not only many recipes, but also instruction on how to tend bar in general that’s still valuable to this day.

My wife turned me on to green chartreuse long ago, and it remains one of my favorite herbal liqueurs, along with Benedictine. Sometimes I just sip it neat, but generally I prefer it in cocktails. Here it combines with gin, sweet vermouth, and orange bitters in a brilliant symphony of tastiness.

The drink is an herbal explosion, especially when paired with sweet vermouth that has lots of stuff going on. I actually prefer softer vermouth like Martini, Dolin or Noilly Prat here, rather than a spicy/bitter one like Carpano Antica Formula or Cocchi. I also like to stir this one a lot in order to get a decent amount of dilution. Trust me: The ingredients can stand up to it.

Combine all ingredients in a pint glass over ice and stir thoroughly. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a Luxardo maraschino cherry.

This article is a modified and enhanced version of a post that ran on my nightly cocktail blog, DrinkShouts.

Christopher Buecheler is a novelist, a web developer, an award-winning amateur mixologist, a brewer, a guitarist, a drummer, and an NBA enthusiast. He lives a semi-nomadic life with his wife and two cats, currently residing in Providence, RI. You can learn more at his website,


  • […] Golden Book, by O. Blunier. Some people mistakenly list this as an alternate name for the Bijou, but don’t be fooled: that latter drink uses Green Chartreuse and sweet vermouth. This one uses […]

  • Reply April 16, 2015


    Finally found a tasty use for the bottle of sweet vermouth in my refrigerator as I’m not particularly fond of the other drinks I’ve tried mixing with it. Thank you for sharing!

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