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:

A-Brighter-Martini-2

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.

Washington-Avenue-3

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.

Washington-Avenue-2

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!

Advertisements

Improved Negronis are for Chinese New Year

Improved-Negroni-1

Gung Hay Fat Choy to you all! It’s Chinese New Year! Growing up in the SF Bay Area meant many a fun trip to Chinatown for New Year festivities and I totally loved the parades! My darling girlfriend is Chinese American and so this celebration has taken on a whole new meaning for me! I’ve noticed that no other culture wishes that everyone has Luck as much as the Chinese culture. So to you all I say, “May you be prosperous and full of luck!”

Trivia? Which drink goes perfectly with the rich and varied flavours of Chinese food cause it cuts right through the mix? NEGRONI! Bing, Bing, Bing! You did it! The citrus and bitter notes of a Negroni pair well with the heavy foods in a traditional Chinese New Year dinner and Red is the color of the celebration.

This is not just any Negroni though, this is An Improved Negroni. You may be thinking, “this bitch, why does she think she can ‘improve’ a Negroni?” But I’m not such a crazy bitch! “Improved Cocktails” are actually a category of drink. If you look back on the grand history of cocktails, the original ones were in an Old Fashioned format. The “improvements” meant adding things like a dash of Absinthe or two dashes of Maraschino.

My improvements are: adjusting the ratios, adding Maraschino and using Blood Orange peel in the drink for added Citrusness. Sun Ye Fai Lok!

Improved-Negroni-3

An Improved Negroni

  • 1 1/2 oz Plymouth Gin
  • 3/4 oz Campari
  • 3/4 oz Carpano Antica Vermouth
  • 2 dashes Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur
  • Garnish: Blood Orange Peel

Combine ingredients and stir over ice until proper dilution has been achived. Strain into rocks glass with ice. Express Blood Orange Peel and Garnish.

Improved Negroni 4

An Improved Negroni in the wild at Chinese New Year 2014. I have switched vermouth since then y’all! 

Improved-Negroni-2

Let’s just look at this drink again. Campari, you make me turn red all over. Remember #EveryWeekIsNegroniWeek

Dr Joe aka Let’s Get Surgical, Surgical

Dr-Joe-1

If y’all follow me on instagram, you’d know that I recently had surgery on my left arm and would have seen this photo:

IMG_0376

This was obvi taken before surgery: Two gowns on my body, one oxygen measuring thingamabob on my 4th finger of my right hand and a hat for my Top Knot. #TopKnot4Lyfe 

The surgery was for a compressed Ulnar Nerve in my left elbow, aka Cubital Tunnel, which occurred in March 2014 after an elevator door accident. (Don’t ask.) Since that time, I’ve had very limited use of my arm & hand, lots of pain and tingling + numbness in my 4th & 5th digits. To be frank, it sucked.

ulnar_nerve

Image via http://www.surgicalnotes.co.uk/files/images/ulnar_nerve.jpg

But now, NOW I’ve had surgery and things are already better than they were before! I had an amazing experience at Columbia Presbyterian where everyone from the Nervously-Singing-Resident-Surgeon to the Uses-Crystals-And-Practices-Reiki-Nurse were so kind, helpful and totally on top of things. And then, there’s my hero, my surgeon, my salvation: Dr Joe.

That’s not his real name and I didnt ask permission to use his name, so for now, he’s Dr Joe. He is a brilliant but kind and forthright surgeon. Most of the surgeons I’ve interacted with during my injury have been total assholes. But not Dr Joe! He’s the best! The kindest! And he has dark curly hair like I do! I’d even say he’s a “Hot Doctor”.

This is the last drink I made the night before Surgery and it was incredible: dry, smooth, sophisticated, completely classy. I want to live my life as if it were this drink.

Dr Joe

  • 2 oz Hayman’s Old Tom Gin
  • 1/2 oz Santa Maria Al Monte Amaro
  • 1/2 oz Carpano Antica Formula Vermouth
  • Around 14 drops of Maraschino Cherry Liqueur
  • 2 dashes Dr Adam Elmegirab’s Boker’s Bitters*
  • Garnish: Lemon Peel

Combine ingredients, add ice and stirrrrrrr until proper dilution has been achieved. Strain into coupe, express Lemon Peel and garnish.

*A quick note about these sensational bitters: THEY’RE SENSATIONAL! Made with a 19th century recipe, they are intended to reproduce what were perhaps the Original bitters. They shine with Old Tom Gin, like raise the banners and wave the flags. Buy some and make yourself a Martinez immediately!

Dr-Joe-2

MxMo + An English Sailor

An-English-Sailor-1

You guys, worlds have collided! It turns out that the Mixology Monday theme for the month of January is BLUE! It’s like I don’t even need an excuse to keep going with #TikiTheSnowAway. Tiki is everywhere. Tiki is omnipresent. Tiki IS.

Blue MxMo Logo

MxMo is a monthly cocktail party with a theme. They give the theme, then we cocktail bloggers post our drinks to fit this theme. This months’ boistrously Blue theme is being hosted by Andrea over at GinHound and she is using Blue in two ways:  “melancholy” or “Tiki”. Obvi, I’m going with Tiki.

ALSO: why has no one made a Blue Monday joke here? Seriously. Such a great opportunity.

An English Sailor

  • 2 oz Hayman’s Old Tom Gin
  • 3/4 oz Senior Blue Curaçao
  • 1/4 oz Luxardo Maraschino Cherry Liqueur
  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice
  • 1 dash of Orange Bitters
  • Garnish: Lemon peel and Maraschino Cherry flag

In container, combine ingredients over ice and shake baby shake. Strain into coupe, garnish with Lemon peel and Cherry flag.

An-English-Sailor-2

What fun! This is my first time to participate in MxMo and I’m looking forward to more challenges! Have the best Blue Monday ever, y’all. 🙂

You’re So Kind: NOLET’S Silver Gin

NOLET'S-Silver-Fizz-No-2-2

I would like to once again thank those kind people at MBooth Marketing for giving me the opportunity to work with such a fantastic product. Aren’t they kind? THEY’RE SO INCREDIBLY KIND!

Ok, wow, like really wow. NOLET’S Silver Gin is sensational! It’s unlike any Gin I’ve ever had and if you’ve read the My Home Bar page of this blog, you know that I am INTO GIN! When tasting it neat, the nose is some outrageous combination of Turkish Rose, Peach and Raspberry, then comes more familiar Gin botanicals. The palate is smooth and silky Gin beautifulness. Truly, I was blown away.

I feel like NOLET’S Silver and I are going to have a long and fruitful relationship. I’m planning to do some strange and wonderous things with this Gin, I’m planning to use it with lots of fruit, hell, I’m planning to drink it neat with a Lemon twist. Right? It’s so good neat!

And now, the cocktails:

Half-Light-3

It’s an Improved Martini except because NOLET’S Silver is so different from any Gin that I’d usually use in a Martini, it’s NOT A MARTINI! I swapped out Dolin Dry for Dolin Blanc and added a rinse of St. George Absinthe Verte. Brilliant right? Just wait and see!

Half Light

  • 2 1/2 oz NOLET’S Silver Gin
  • 1/2 oz Dolin Blanc Vermouth
  • 2 dashes of Regans’ No. 6 Orange Bitters
  • St. George Absinthe Verte Rinse
  • Lemon Peel

Rinse coupe with Absinthe and chill. In tin, combine Gin, Vermouth, Bitters over cracked ice and stir. Strain into coupe, express Lemon peel and garnish.

Winter-Blossom-2

This is a Variation on a Sunflower Cocktail which is a Variation on a Corpse Reviver No. 2. I swapped out the Cointreau for Berentzen Pear Liqueur, ditched the Absinthe, adjusted the ratios a touch and added an Asian Pear Slice as garnish. Divine. A fabulous shaken Wintry Cocktail!

Winter Blossom

  • 1 oz NOLET’S Silver Gin
  • 3/4 oz Berentzen Pear Liqueur
  • 3/4 oz St-Germain
  • 3/4 oz Lemon Juice
  • Asian Pear Slice

In tin, combine Gin, Pear Liqueur, St-G and Lemon Juice over ice and shake baby shake! Double strain into coupe and garnish with Asian Pear Slice.

NOLET'S-Silver-Fizz-No-2-3

Silver Gin, Silver Fizz. Just cause it’s chilly, doesn’t give us any excuses for not making a Silver Fizz! Ohhhh, what a Silver Fizz this is too! I wanted to add complexity to the Fizz formula and build on NOLET’S Silver’s already fabulous flavour profile. Enjoy!

NOLET’S Silver Fizz

  • 1 3/4 oz NOLET’S Silver Gin
  • 1 dash Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur
  • 1 dash Barkeep Lavender Bitters
  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice
  • 1/2 oz Demerara Simple Syrup
  • Egg White
  • Club Soda

In tin, combine ingredients and dry shake until Egg White has emulsified. Add ice to tin and shake again. Add 1 oz Club Soda to Collins glass first, then ice on top of that. Double strain contents of tin into Collins glass, top with Club Soda. *This version of Soda first, Double Strain, Soda last will give you a nice foamy top to the Fizz. Cool baby, cool.

CHEERS!

Winter-Blossom-1

Don’t you just wanna drink like a million of these? I do.