The Blood of My Enemies cocktail at Two Headed Dog. 

Image: Jenn Duncan

After ordering the gin, hibiscus, and pineapple cocktail Blood of My Enemies at Midtown haunt Two Headed Dog, you may feel inclined to steal the tiny skull poking out from a halved lemon garnish. Don’t worry—you’re allowed to take it.

“We know somebody who saved the skulls from all the Blood of My Enemies they’ve had since the beginning,” says co-owner Lindsay Rae, who opened the laid-back bar with her Grand Prize co-worker Billy Boyd last August. Another skull collector has made a bracelet out of hers.

It’s details like this that have made Two Headed Dog an instant hit. That and the Texas-country and punk playlist, tables crafted from shiplap salvaged from the legendary, dearly departed club Fitzgerald’s, the vintage photo booth, taxidermy on the walls, and rustic-without-trying- too-hard front patio. The drinks don’t hurt, either.

Don’t let the brutal name fool you: Blood of My Enemies, one of five draft cocktails offered at the bar, is seriously drinkable— especially on a warm spring day. Starting with a tart, tropical wallop up front and lovely bitterness on the back end, it’s the ultimate people pleaser.

But behind this particular tiki-esque cocktail’s playfulness is some wicked chemistry. Rae and her team devised the recipe in collaboration with Fords Gin ambassador Máté Hartai; drink preparation starts by boiling hibiscus tea and turning it into simple syrup. That’s added to a mix of diluted pineapple and three kinds of acid—called “citrus wizard stuff” on the menu—plus the gin. All of it is batched into a keg and poured, a refreshing ruby red, from a tap, then garnished with mint, lemon, and the little skull.

According to Rae, literally everyone likes it.

“You see a punk rock guy drinking it, or a downtown lawyer drinking it, or the girl going out with her friends partying, she’s drinking it,” says Rae. “It has no boundaries.”

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