Crying over the end of Summer with a Blackberry Buck

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Tis a sad sad time over here at Home Bar Girl, for my favorite season, the season of my birth, the season with ALL the fruit, the season of heat, ice-filled Cocktails, swimming, and funnnnnn, is nearly over. I’m crying some real end-of-summer tears y’all.

However, there is one thing about late-August that I hold near and dear to my heart…

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…Blackberries.

When I was a small gurrrrrl growing up in Novato, CA, we lived next to a park with a creek. I spent every day in that park and when the weather was warm enough, I spent a lot of time “creek walking” and swimming in its murky waters. There was one patch of the creek that had a ton of Blackberry bushes, so in late August we’d pick a bucket full o’ berries, take them back home, and Mamoo would put them in a fabulous Blackberry cobbler.

Fast forward to 2016 and I’m city gurrrrrl who dreams, nay pines for freshly picked fruit. I get my fix by going to the Grand Army Plaza Farmer’s Market every Saturday. The minute Blackberries showed up at the market, my heart lept with joy, and I bought some.

Nostalgia, IT’S REAL!

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So dark, so luscious, so tasty.

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So, we’re doing this drink smash style and I’d recommend layering your items in the same order as the above photo. That way, when you put your straw into the bottom of the glass, you get a nice hit of mint.

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I was thinking of making a Bramble, but lack the Crème de Mûre, so I went with a Buck instead:

  1. I decided to use Bimini Gin cause it has a bunch of nice citrus notes which would pair well with this selection of fruit and still retain enough juniper backbone to shine through. If you can get this Gin, do so immediately. It’s the perfect summer Gin and I’ve made a million Gin & Tonics, Collins, and Negronis with it.
  2. Fever-Tree Ginger Beer is real real good y’all. Nice amount of ginger but not too spicy which in the case of this Buck, is juuuust right.

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Blackberry Buck

  • 2 oz Bimini Gin
  • ~3 oz Fever Tree Ginger Beer
  • Handfull of Blackberries
  • 2 Lemon Wedges
  • 5-6 Mint Leaves
  • Garnish: Mint bouquet

Build in Collins glass: Muddle Blackberries, Lemon Wedges, and Mint together. Add Gin, ice and stir til things have combined nicely. Top with Ginger Beer and a Mint bouquet.

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End of summer Cheers to all y’all, may you sip a Blackberry Buck and fight back the tears!

National Daiquiri Day with Brugal Extra Dry

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Woo! Did y’all know that there is a National Daiquiri Day? Yessssssss there is and it’s today! Like we even needed an excuse to celebrate this most magnificent of Cocktails. Daiquiris have actually been my fave drink this summer and are always my go to for testing out Rums.

Well, today we’ll be making a few recipes with an excellent Rum for Daiquiris, Brugal Extra Dry.

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Brugal Extra Dry, you’re simply irresistible! So well dressed too. 

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My fave way to make a classic Daiquiri is in a 2:1:3/4 format cause I like things to be TART!

Brugal Extra Dry Daiquiri

  • 2 oz Brugal Extra Dry
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • 3/4 oz Simple Syrup
  • Garnish: Lime wheel

Combine ingredients over ice and shake like a rocket. Double strain into coupe and garnish.

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Next we’ll make a Pineapple Cinnamon Daiquiri cause why not? Right? Pineapple and Cinnamon go extremely well together in tart Rum filled cocktails. Add a lil Tiki umbrella and we’ve got a real crowd pleaser!

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Brugal Extra Dry Pineapple Cinnamon Daiquiri

  • 2 oz Brugal Extra Dry Rum
  • 1/2 oz Lime Juice
  • 1/2 oz Pineapple Juice
  • 1/2 Cinnamon Bark Syrup*
  • Garnish: Pineapple + Tiki Umbrella

Combine ingredients over ice and shake it baby, shake it. Double strain into coupe. Garnish with Pineapple and a Tiki Umbrella.

*Cinnamon Bark Syrup

  • 1 oz or approx 0.06 lb Cinnamon Bark
  • 2 Cups of Water
  • 2 Cups of Sugar (Demerara used here)
  1. In sauce pan, muddle Cinnamon Bark until it is in shards.
  2. Add Sugar and Water and slowly bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat and simmer for 4 minutes.
  4. Turn heat off and set sit for around 8 hours covered.
  5. Double strain into container. Smell it. Try not to drool.
  6. Keep in fridge.

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Lastly, we’re going into deep freeze mode for this Banana Ginger Daiquiri. Look at its creamy goodness, behold those cherries! Get excited!

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Quick note on this one: If you find that 1 1/2 oz Lime is too much, feel free to reduce it to 1 or 1 1/4. Remember, I like my Daiquiris tart!

Frozen Banana Ginger Daiquiri

  • 2 1/2 oz Brugal Extra Dry Rum
  • 1 1/2 oz Lime
  • 1 1/4 oz Ginger Syrup*
  • Around 1/2 a frozen Banana
  • 5-6 oz Ice
  • Garnish: Maraschino Cherries

Combine ingredients in blender and blend for just about 7 seconds, or until frothy but not too whipped. Pour into double rocks glass and garnish.

Ginger Syrup*

  • Approx 1 Cup of chopped ginger
  • 1 cup Turbinado Sugar
  • 1 cup of water
  1. Combine ingredients in saucepan and heat on lowwwwww until liquids begin to simmer.
  2. Try not to let boil, but simmer for around 30 mins.
  3. Turn off heat, let cool a bit and taste. If it’s gingery enough, let it sit in the pan for 8 hours covered.
  4. If not, turn the head back on lowwwww and simmer for another 20 mins, then repeat step 3.
  5. Fine strain syrup into container making sure to press the Ginger and extract as much goodness as possible.
  6. Keep in fridge.

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Well, that was tasty.

Thanks to Brugal for making the perfect Rum for all our National Daiquiri Day needs! Thanks to MBooth for the delicious Rum!

4th of July Daiquiri Party: Blue Daiquiri No. 2

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The 4th of July Daiquiri Party is in full swing on Instagram! If you want to submit a photo and recipe, use the hashtag #4thofJulyDaiquiriParty!

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Today’s Daiquiri is a Blue take on the classic Daiquiri No. 2 from the famous La Floridita Bar in Cuba. I love this Daiquiri, it’s supremely bright and refreshing with nice Orange flavours. I’m literally just subbing the Blue Curaçao for clear Curaçao, so there isn’t much variation here. The blue colour does make me want to get on a plane and go to a tropical island though!

Blue Daiquiri No. 2

  • 2 oz Denizen Aged White Rum
  • Barspoon Senior Blue Curaçao
  • 3/4 oz fresh Lime Juice
  • 1/2 oz Simple Syrup
  • Barspoon fresh Orange Juice
  • Garnish: Orange wedge

Combine ingredients over ice and shake like a rocket! Strain into chilled coupe. Garnish with Orange wedge.

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Cheers to all of us on this 4th of July Holiday weekend!

RTV & Tonic

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Happy July! Let the quest for low octane, fizzy Cocktails continue!

Remember that Rose Tea Vodka we made awhile back for the unbelievably complicated Flower Flower cocktail? If you still have any left (hard to believe, I know), I’ve got a really fabulous summery Vodka & Tonic for you!

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Hello pretty Mint leaf, how fragrant are thy scents!

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This is a very easy drink to make, my only encouragement is that you get the best Tonic you can possibly find. I highly recommend Fever-Tree Tonic Water or Tomr’s Tonic Syrup. You really don’t want an overly sugary Tonic for this recipe or the drink will be too sweet.

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Combine Rose Tea Vodka, St-G, and around 1 oz of Tonic Water. Gently stir for just a few seconds so everything is swimming together in harmony. Pour into a Collins glass over Ice. Garnish with Lemon slices and Mint. Top up with more Tonic Water.

Bonus: if you have the Fever-Tree Bitter Lemon, it makes an incredible substitution for Tonic in this drink!

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Summery Cheers to you all!

#TequilaSeason: Rickey Ricardo

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Heyyyyy, y’all! Hope everyone is having a really fabulous start to their summer! I am! I have been drinking a lot of long drinks and low proof cocktails lately cause it’s just too hot for a heavy stirred drink. Or even a heavy shaken drink, or really anything that isn’t light and airy.

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Well, this Cocktail came about when I wanted to mix a combination of a Southside Rickey and East Side Cocktail together. In other words, I wanted Cucumber and Mint at the same time but I wanted it in a Collins glass with ice and Soda Water. But then it hit me (like it usually does), “Gurrrrrrrl, this would be supreme if you used Tequila instead of Gin!” Hot damn!

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Crushing hard on this Mint bouquet.

Always keep in mind that Tequila & Cucumber are best friends, so there was literally no way this wasn’t going to be the bomb diggity. The name of the drink sort of came to me in a flash as well. “Gurrrrrrl, it’s a Rickey but it’s Tequila, so like, it should be called Rickey Ricardo!” My, my, this internal monologue is getting out of control!

Rickey Ricardo

  • 2 oz Espolón Reposado Tequila
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • 3/4 oz Agave Nectar
  • 3 Cucumber Wheels
  • Pinch of salt
  • Soda Water
  • Garnish: 3 scored Cucumber Wheels, Mint bouquet

Combine Lime Juice, Agave, Cucumber Wheels, Salt and muddle. Add Tequila, ice and short shake. Double strain into Collins glass over ice, garnish with scored Cucumber wheels, spank the Mint and garnish. Top with Soda Water.

Bonus: if you want to muddle some Mint into the drink, it just becomes that much more fabulous! I’d recommend 1 or 2 leaves for muddling. You want the Tequila/Cuke/Salt flavour to remain at the front, so easy on the mint.

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1000 summery Cheers to everyone! May all your #TequilaSeason dreams come true

Our Summer Martini: Melissa Martini

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As temperatures climb, I’m looking for ways to have lower and lower octane cocktails. I want deliciousness, but I want it light and fragrant y’all. It’s time to break out the Blanc Vermouth, brightest Gin you have, some tasty Absinthe, and fresh herbs for garnish.

Herb Plants

I recently took a trip down to my local plant shop and got Lemon Balm and Mint to add to the recently acquired Basil plant. If you haven’t smelled Lemon Balm before, it’s definitely Lemony but also astringent, kind of minty and herbaceous in an Anise sort of way. In otherwords, it’s perfect as a cocktail garnish.

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I mean, look at it this Lemon Balm! It’s a stunning leaf and so wonderfully fragrant. I highly recommend getting a plant and putting it in your garden or window sill. Lots of sun & water = happy Lemon Balm.

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I’m actually so into the Lemon Balm that I named the drink Melissa which is the greek name for this plant. I am of course using the Berkshire Mountain Distillery Ethereal Gin Batch 9 because it’s supremely bright, floral, fragrant, and well, it makes me feel happy. If you can get this Gin, do it!

Melissa Martini

  • 1 1/2 oz Berkshire Mountain Distillery Ethereal Gin Batch 9 (sub the brightest Gin you’ve got)
  • 1 1/2 oz Dolin Blanc (Sub Carpano Bianco)
  • rinse St. George Absinthe Verte
  • Garnish: Lemon Balm leaf

Rinse a coupe with Absinthe and chill. Combine Gin and Blanc over ice and give it a very very long stir. Dilution is key to the lightness of this Martini. Strain into rinsed coupe, spank the Lemon Balm and garnish.

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Cheers!

Summer Spritz with Carpano Bianco

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Y’all in just a couple of days the Earth is going to be the closest to the Sun that it will be all year and we know what that means, SUMMER IS UPON US! To celebrate this glorious occasion and kick off the Solstice parties, let’s have a Summer Spritz with Carpano Bianco! Summer Solstice is the longest day of the year, which means we need to be sipping on some light, refreshing cocktails to keep the party going ’til the Sun sets.

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Carpano Bianco is one of the magnificent Vermouths made by the House of Carpano in Italy. The flavor is light, fresh and complex with citrus and exotic fruit notes coming through, followed by grapey, vinous notes, and rounding out with almond and floral tones. Essentially, perfect for summer and perfect for Spritzing.

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Well, are we ready to have a Solstice party? Yes? Ok!

What you need:

  • Lots of Carpano Bianco (I’d recommend at least 1 Liter)
  • San Pellegrnio Limonata and/or Pompelmo
  • All of the Citrus (yes, I mean ALLLLL of the Citrus)
  • Some adorable napkins and paper straws
  • Fun party cups
  • Sunglasses
  • Party people

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Summer Spritz with Carpano Bianco

  • 2 oz Carpano Bianco
  • San Pellegrino Limonata or Pompelmo
  • Garnish: Lemon, Lime and Orange Wedges

Build in Glass: fill glass with ice, add Carpano Bianco, San Pellegrino, and gently stir. Garnish with Citrus wedges.

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Summer Spritz prrrrrrty time y’all.

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Sipping on this right now and it’s so wonderful. The Summer Spritz is perfect. Cheers!

If you make one (or ten) and would like to share it on Instagram or Twitter, use the hashtags #carpanospritz and #carpanobianco.

Thanks to the Baddish Group for the fabulous Carpano Bianco!