Flower Flower & Rose Tea infused Vodka

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Yep, you read that right. I did say the word Vodka. I said it loud and proud because this is the first time I’ve been really excited to use Vodka in a drink. (It’s also the first time I’ve used Saké in a drink but more about that later.)

If you know me IRL, you know I’m always like, “Vodka, what’s the point? Where’s the Gin?” Honestly, what got me even considering using Vodka in this drink is cause my friend Chris at Bearded Lady said that he’d been asked to create a Vodka drink for the spring menu. I took it as a challenge to myself.

The inspiration for Flower Flower was to use as many flower flavoured liqueurs/spirits/bitters in my Home Bar as possible while still creating something drinkable and delicious. This was an EXTREMELY difficult challenge and it took me around five tries and a whole lot of “going back to the drawing board”. There are a lot of small amounts in this drink and there is also the aforementioned Rose Tea infused Vodka.

Rose-Tea-Vodka

If you haven’t tried Tulsi herbal teas from India, you haven’t lived. They are definitely the best bagged herbal teas I’ve ever tasted and I always have the Sweet Rose tea at home. I had thought of putting the Sweet Rose with Gin but after my conversation with Chris, decided this was a good time to use that bottle of Tito’s I keep around for emergencies*.

Rose Tea infused Vodka

  • 4 bags of Tulsi Sweet Rose Tea (or your favourite Rose Tea)
  • 300 ml Tito’s Vodka (I always do infusions in ml, it’s just easier)
  • Fine strainer

Rip those tea bags open and let tea steep loosely in the Vodka for 30 mins. (Cover with plastic wrap or seal ur jar) Fine strain into bottle. Smell the deliciousness, taste the glory.

*The emergencies being when someone asks for something with Vodka and I don’t have to panic.

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Now, remember, I said this took like five times to get right, it wasn’t until I opened the fridge and saw that bottle of Yoshinogawa Winter Warrior Saké that the drink all came together.This sake is dry, floral, fruity, a bit sweet and wonderful. I’m always looking for ways to dry out a drink when using multiple liqueurs and in this case, saké was it.

Flower Flower smells like an English Garden, is dry enough on the tongue for serious cocktail drinkers and is perfect for spring. The colour of the drink actually reminds me of a Rose stem. It also features my new BFF Carpano Dry. Enjoy!

Flower Flower

  • 1 1/2 oz Rose Tea infused Tito’s Vodka
  • 1 oz Yoshinogawa Winter Warrior Junmai Ginjo Saké
  • 1 oz Carpano Dry Vermouth
  • 1 tsp Chartreuse Jaune
  • 1 tsp St-Germain
  • 1 tsp Crème de Violette
  • 1/2 tsp Orange Flower Water
  • 1 dash Bar Keep Lavender Bitters

Garnish: Grapefruit peel rose

Combine ingredients over ice and stir until proper dilution has been achieved. Strain into coupe. Express Grapefruit peel and swirl into a Rose.

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Happy spring to you all!

Thanks to the Baddish Group for the wonderful bottle of Carpano Dry Vermouth!

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Carpano Dry, my new Best Friend

Carpano-Dry

We’ve gathered together today to talk about Carpano Dry, my new fave Vermouthy. That’s right, from the house of Carpano, makers of the universally beloved Carpano Antica, comes a terrific Dry Vermouth. I love Vermouthy, I always think about Vermouthy, Vermouthy is a very dear friend of mine.

Flavor Profile:

Nose: Citrus, spices, coriander, fruit
Tongue: Lemony, long finish, acidic, “winey”, green apple, citrus fruits
Impression: smoother than all other Italian Dry Vermouth I’ve tried, not as dry as Dolin Dry, a tad sweet, citrus fruit notes abound. Am highly likely to use it in a Negroni, Martini with a bright Gin and a Lemon twist, drink it alone on ice with a Lemon twist.

For real though, I’ve probably made at least 7 or 8 Carpano Dry on the rocks with a Lemon twist, it’s so good on its own. In fact, I just had one with my homemade Black Truffle Chicken Papardelle. (Thanks to my excellent girlfriend for the excellent dinner!)

And now, the cocktails:

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In the same way that when we get a new Rum, we make a Daiquiri, when we get a new Dry Vermouth, we make a Martini. In this particular case, we make A Brighter Martini. I chose NOLET’S Dry Gin because it’s a very bright Gin, full of fruit, floral notes and exactly the one to pair with Carpano Dry.

A Brighter Martini

  • 2 1/4 oz NOLET’S Silver Dry Gin
  • 3/4 oz Carpano Dry Vermouth
  • 2 dashes Regan’s No 6 Orange Bitters
  • Garnish: Lemon peel

Combine ingredients over ice and stir until proper dilution has been achieved. Strain into coupe. Express Lemon peel and garnish.

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If it works well in a Martini, then Carpano Dry must also work well in a classic style cocktail. This is sort of a Brooklyn meets an Improved Whiskey Cocktail and is really bright and cheery. Perfect for Spring.

Washington Avenue

  • 1 1/2 oz Rye
  • 3/4 oz Carpano Dry
  • 1/4 oz Pernod Pastis
  • 1/4 oz Maraschino Cherry Liqueur
  • 2 dashes Hella Bitter Citrus Bitters
  • Garnish: Lemon & Orange peels

Combine ingredients over ice and stir until proper dilution has been achieved. Strain into coupe. Express Lemon peel, Orange peel and garnish.

Arsenic-&-Old-Lace-2

Lastly, we’re gonna use Carpano Dry in a classic cocktail: Arsenic & Old Lace. There are several different specs for this drink with the Crème de Violette ranging from 1/4 oz to 1/2 and the Absinthe Vert from a rinse to 1/2 oz! I’m going with a more Vermouth heavy recipe and lighter on the Violette and Absinthe. Again, Carpano Dry is perfect in this drink .

Arsenic & Old Lace

  • 1 3/4 oz Old Tom Gin or English Dry Gin
  • 3/4 oz Carpano Dry
  • 1/4 oz Crème de Violette
  • 1/4 oz St George Absinthe Verte
  • 2 dashes Regans’ No 6 Orange Bitters
  • Lemon Peel

Combine ingredients over ice and stir until proper dilution has been achieved. Strain into coupe. Express Lemon peel and garnish.

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Dreamy, springy, light, bright and wonderful, Carpano Dry, you are my new Best Friend.

Thanks to the Baddish Group for the wonderful bottle of Carpano Dry Vermouth!

Classic Cocktails: Aviation

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I have a lot of feelings about this drink. I went on a 2.5 year Aviation challenge during which time I went to many different bars, in many different States of the good old USA, ordered an Aviation, and took notes. Most of the time, these “Aviations” were WAY TOO lemony. Even bars I really respect used too much Lemon Juice in the drink and Lemon Peels as garnishes. HELL NO.

Where is your Maraschino Cherry? Where are your correct proportions? These are the questions and I’ve got the answer.

Honestly, the very best Aviation I’ve ever had (on more than one occasion) is made by Angel Negrín and here is his perfect recipe.

Aviation

  • 2 oz / 60 ml Plymouth Gin
  • 2 tsp / 10 ml Luxardo Maraschino Cherry Liqueur
  • 1 tsp / 5 ml Crème de Violette
  • 1/2 oz / 15 ml Lemon Juice
  • Maraschino Cherry

In tin, combine ingredients and shake over ice. Place Maraschino cherry in coupe, double strain liquids into coupe.

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Bonus: Aviations make sensational Fizzes and even better Silver Fizzes.

Aviation Fizz: Make the Aviation, strain into Collins glass and add ice, Club Soda and Cherry.

Aviation Silver Fizz: When making the Aviation, use 2 tsp Violette and add Egg White. Dry shake like hell, add ice and shake again. Add 1 oz Club soda to Collins glass, add ice and Cherry, strain Aviation into glass. Top with more soda.

Aviation Royale: Make the Aviation, strain into coupe, add cherry and top with Champagne.

Aviation-Fizz

Muhhhhhhhhhhhgh. This drink is so so amazing. I can’t handle it…when it’s made properly. 🙂