Sunday, April 28, 2013
This week's choice was another rye drink, Tennessee, this one featuring maraschino.
1 1⁄2 oz Rye
1⁄2 oz Maraschino Liqueur
1⁄2 oz Lemon juice
1 Maraschino cherry (as garnish)
Shake over ice, strain into a cocktail glass, garnish with a maraschino cherry.
The verdict: Some people apparently make it at a 1:1:1 ratio, but I think it was well-balanced with this amount, and the lemon wasn't enough to bother Scott's acid reflux. On the other hand, he felt that the rye wasn't a good match for the maraschino and lemon. We are interested in trying this again with a different rye, to see whether it was this rye in particular or rye in general. The rye we chose is unusual, as it i 100% rye, rather than simply majority rye grains used to make the whiskey.
Wednesday, April 17, 2013
We went to Frankenmouth this weekend for an event and while we were there, we picked up a bottle of Old George Double Barrel rye whiskey from the Grand Traverse Distillery tasting room. The distillery itself is up at the top of Michigan's lower peninsula in Traverse City,but I suppose that they decided that since Frankenmouth is a touristy little fake-Bavarian town, they should have a presence there, and from our perspective, they were not wrong. And unlike the cookoo clocks Scott was eyeing the whiskey was in our price range, though not as accessible as the fudge or cheese, and not really priced to be an every-day whiskey. So we chose to feature rye in our cocktail this week, Armistice.
1 1⁄2 oz Rye Whiskey
1⁄2 oz Dry Vermouth
1⁄4 oz Green Chartreuse
1⁄4 oz Maraschino Liqueur
2 ds Bitters, Fee Brothers Whiskey Barrel Aged
Stir over ice, strain into cocktail glass.
Although we don't have Fee Bros. Whiskey Barrel Aged Bitters, we felt that the regular Fee Bros. old-fashioned bitters was a decent substitute.
The verdict: We liked this one. Unlike many other drinks with Chartreuse or maraschino, they don't hog center stage, because the rye also holds its own. There is spice from the rye, herbs from the chartreuse and sweetness from the maraschino. The smell reminds me of certain tisanes, with light herbal, almost floral note, but the flavor is stronger.
It's been a long time since I posted, and I apologize for that. It has also been a while since we last had a drink night, thanks to both of us working extra hard, etc. During that time, the photos of the last drink we tried this winter have been lurking on the memory card of my camera, and the recipe I used has been sitting open.
I had read several sources on the Tom and Jerry, which is in many ways the father of today's common eggnog. Tom and Jerry are the principal characters of Pierce Egan's 1821 "Life in London...", an account of the rakish adventures of several English gentlemen from high society to the sort of situations that Robert Downey Junior's Sherlock Holmes uses to try to put Watson's fiancée off in the recent movie versions - boxing, gambling, etc. This book was so popular that it inspired more than sixty-five imitations by the next year, as well as plays and fashion trends. By 1823, Tom and Jerry's popularity had spread to New York. By 1831, the phenomenon was so well-known that there were references to Tom and Jerry Shops rather than beer shops. In the years following, as we do here in the land of the cocktail, we invented a drink by that name. Over the course of the next hundred years, it became so popular that it was nearly ubiquitous. Journalist Damon Runyon wrote, “This hot Tom and Jerry is an old time drink that is once used by one and all in this country to celebrate Christmas with, and in fact it is once so popular that many people think Christmas is invented only to furnish an excuse for hot Tom and Jerry…” Sets of punch bowls and mugs stamped with "Tom and Jerry" were common, until the drink fell out of favor in the last fifty years.
Assembling the drinks on an individual basis will assure that each drink is properly warm. The punch bowl can be used to hold the batter, just be sure to stir the mix up prior to each drink, as it will separate, and thoroughly stir the drink as you add spirits and water or milk.
Tom and Jerry
In a 6 oz Tom and Jerry mug, add:
3 oz Batter
1/2 oz Cognac
1/2 oz Rum
Boiling Water or Hot Milk to top
Add batter to a heated mug
Add spirits, stirring, then boiling water or milk, stirring
Garnish with freshly grated nutmeg
Separate 4 eggs into white and yolks
Whip the egg whites with a pinch of cream of tartar until stiff
Beat egg yolks until thin
Fold in 3/4 Cup Powdered Sugar into egg yolks
Add a pinch of allspice, cinnamon, and cloves as desired
Fold in egg whites
Mix until light and frothy
Stir batter before each use
Makes enough for 8+ drinks
The verdict: This was a great hot winter drink with eggnog family flavors, but a light and fluffy feel. I was surprised, but these cappuccino mugs were just the right size, and looked so festive too.
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
This week, while browsing though a list of classics to see what we hadn't tried yet, I settled on another creamy chocolatey drink - the Brandy Alexander. As I poured the drink, I discovered the danger of using the gradations on our new Boston shaker. I poured the first two ingredients then proceeded to pour the cream far too fast, but since I was simply adding liquid to the same glass and had used up all of the crème de cacao, I was unable to go back and fix it to the correct proportions.
1 oz Cognac
1 oz Crème de Cacao Dark
1 oz Double Cream
Garnish: Grated Nutmeg
Pour all ingredients in a shaker, fill with ice and shake. Double strain into a cocktail glass. Grate nutmeg on top.
The verdict: At the level of cream I accidentally poured in (nearly twice the amount called-for), this drink strongly resembles Bailey's on the rocks. We didn't find it much more chocolatey an irish cream, though that might have been more evident with less cream.
Thursday, February 28, 2013
I got a bit of a late start on tonight's drink, so rather than the drink I intended to make, which requires cooking up a batter, I chose to try to find another drink to use the chocolate bitters in. With slim pickings in what I could find off the bat, I decided to make a twist another drink we did in the past, Milk Punch. We're still deep in the grips of winter, though it has topped freezing frequently of late. Yesterday, we had extra-heavy snowfall, and though it was not the storm they anticipated, it did set the scene for more wintery drinks.
Aztec Milk Punch
1 oz Brandy
1/2 oz Spiced Dark Rum
1/2 tbsp Sugar
4 dashes Fee Brothers Aztec Chocolate Bitters
4 oz Whole Milk
Add all ingredients to a mixing glass
Shake with ice and strain into a rocks glass filled with shaved or crushed ice
Garnish with a ground cinnamon.
The verdict: a traditional wintery drink in the eggnogg flavor family without the eggs, and therefor lighter. A little bit of chocolate, but not much. Nothing particularly outstanding, but not bad either, and quick and easy to make.
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Back again! I bought a new charger for my laptop, and everything's working again.
This week, I served Dyckman After Dark in the lovely set of coupes I picked up yesterday at the thrift store for 50 cents a piece. As per usual, I picked the drink rather last minute, so it is lacking an orange peel garnish. One reason I selected this drink is that it also makes use of an ingredient we picked up recently, chocolate bitters.
Dyckman After Dark
1 1/2 oz Añejo rum
1 oz Orange liqueur
3 ds Chocolate bitters, Fee Brothers Aztec Chocolate
Orange twist garnish
Stir over ice. Strain into a coupe. Garnish with an orange twist.
The verdict: this was a tasty dessert drink, as orange and chocolate are always a good combination. They work nicely with the rum, and blend together well. It was only a hint of chocolate, and Scott couldn't pick it out specifically. Our guest liked it, but it is still strong, and the burn was too much for his recently-sick throat.
Tuesday, February 5, 2013
Sunday, January 27, 2013
It has been a little while since I've posted anything, and it must seem like I've really fallen off the map, especially since I have this goal to post every workday this year.
Just look at my cute puppy dog. You can't see that face and make accusations, can you?
Now, I don't want to seem like I'm blaming Luna for not posting. We adopted her from the Humane Society over a month ago, so that's not it. Mainly I was just super tired and occupied.
I may not be able to post much in the near future, as I am having issues with my computer's charger.
Still, you can't look at her face and be sad.
Just look at her big brown eyes. All is forgiven, right?
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
This week's cocktail used the last of a bottle of port that we very much enjoyed. We drank the rest of it paired with stilton cheese. This particular port has a lovely nuttiness to it. Just enough was left for us to try a cocktail using it. The Antrim cocktail was created by "Monk" Antrim in Manila around 1925 and appears in The Gentleman's Companion, vol. 2, by Charles Baker, Jr. (1939).
1 oz Cognac
1 oz Port
1/2 tsp Sugar
Shake with lots of cracked ice and serve in a rocks glass.
The verdict: The port is the primary element, but it is lightened by the cognac, and of course by being served over ice. Surprisingly, the drink does not seem particularly more sweet than port alone, so the sugar is definitely a good addition. An enjoyable drink.