Thursday, June 28, 2012

Cocktail Wednesdays: Caterpillar & Duck Under Cocktail

Caterpillar Cocktail
The Caterpillar Cocktail
Last week, we had a red table wine with dinner that was made from concord grapes.   Even though it had a normal alcohol content for wine, it still tasted like grape juice.  We decided that although we didn't like it as wine, we could try to use the rest of it in cocktails as a substitute for grape juice.  That is how we ended up trying the Duck Under and the Caterpillar Cocktails.

Duck Under Cocktail

1 oz Gin
1 oz Orange Liqueur
1 oz Grape juice

Shake over iced and strain into a cocktail glass.

The verdict: This was a pretty decent cocktail. We're starting to come to the conclusion that gin+citrus+fruit works well. Still, it wasn't particularly special, and we decided to go ahead and try another cocktail from my list once out guests showed up.


2 oz Bourbon
1 oz Grape juice
1-2 dashes Angostura bitters

Shake over iced and strain into a cocktail glass.

The verdict: We liked this bourbon-based combination much more than the Duck Under Cocktail. It is a little sweeter than a Manhattan, and it's missing some of the spicy notes, but that makes sense, because you're essentially substituting the sweeter grape juice (or sweet concord grape wine) for sweet spiced and fortified wine. Given that grape juice and even the wine we were using have lower alcohol contents than vermouth -- which is fortified with additional spirits -- and it contains less whiskey, this is a less alcoholic twist on the Manhattan.

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