Colonial Cash Crop

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Alright y’all, I’ve got a really delicious drink today that’s a bit more on the adventurous side. Shocking, I know. Me be adventurous? Perish the thought!

Let’s shoop right in.

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The inspiration for this drink came from wanting to use the first three ingredients pictured here in a stirred cocktail: Yaguara Cachaça + Batavia-Arrack + Giffard Banane.

Why put these three together? Well…

  1. Yaguara Cachaça = Bananas, Coconut, Strawberries, Tropical Fruits, pot still funk, Grass. It’s farily viscous, smooth and really had me wanting some…
  2. Giffard Banane = more Banana. So I was really going for Banana, but like multiple versions of Banana. Giffard Banane is more like Banana Bread. Baking spices galore.
  3. Batavia-Arrack = I love this stuff. It’s obtuse as hell. It’s super complex. It’s from Indonesia. It’s kind of hard to describe but I’ll say this: sort of like Rhum Agricole Blanc with a rice overtone, coconut undertone, astringency (like some Scotches), and just feels really tropical.

So essentially we’ve got a tropical-banana paradise as the base, but as a stirred drink. I added Amontillado Sherry to compliment the Giffard Banane spice-wise, the Dolin Dry to dry the drink out, Pernod Pastis to better marry the flavors, and the Nutmeg cause what garnish could be better?!

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It’s like Nutmeg was made for this drink. Or this drink was made for Nutmeg. Or whatever, y’all get the picture.

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The name of this drink is my attempt at being cheeky considering the Cocktail as we know it, is deeply rooted in colonialism. Arrack (or Arak, or Rak) was actually the first Spirit used in Punch recipes back during the Colonial Era and the first spirit the Europeans went nuts over. Like Arrack, Cachaça is also made from Sugar Cane making it just as much of a Colonial Era Cash Crop. Lastly, sweet, glorious Nutmeg. Wars were fought over Nutmeg because Nutmeg is the best spice on earth.

Colonial Cash Crop

  • 1 1/4 oz Yaguara Cachaça
  • 1/2 oz Batavia-Arrack van Oosten
  • 1/2 oz Giffard Banane du Bresil
  • 1/2 oz Dolin Dry
  • 1/4 oz Lustau Amontillado Sherry
  • Garnish: Pernod Pastis rinse, freshly grated Nutmeg

Rinse a rocks glass with Pernod and chill. Combine ingredients over ice and stirrrrrrrrrr til you’re feeling great. Remember, stirring is the ultimate zen. Strain into rocks glass over ice. Garnish with freshly grated Nutmeg.

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The funny thing is, Colonial Cash Crop doesn’t actually come out tasting like BANANA. It’s more like Cachaça-Banana throughout, Arrack wide and present, and the other flavors sort of do a slow roller coaster. It’s pretty intense but sooooo good.

May all your cocktail adventures be as rewarding as this one was for me! Cheers!

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Temple of Clarity

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Ahhhhhhh, a stirred drink. It’s been a hot second since I posted about a cocktail in a Coupe and now that Tiki The Snow Away is over, I’ve got one for y’all.

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Seriously, after a month of shaken and blended drinks, I feel like I almost forgot how zen it is to just STIRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR. Yes, that’s a lot of “R’s” but I like stirring, it makes me feel relaxed.

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Here are yer cast of characters:

  1. Templeton Rye: I wanted the base spirit to be Rye cause I was in the mood. “No lie, she wanted Rye.” I’m really digging the smoothness and mixability of Templeton.
  2. Grand Marnier: I may have mentioned that someone gave this to me as a holiday gift, and I’m so into it! I’ve never had it in my Home Bar before, but the viscosity, spices, dryness, and depth of flavor in Grand Marnier is REALLY doing it for me.
  3. Amontillado Sherry & Dolin Dry: since I added Grand Marnier (sweet, Orange), I wanted to add things to dry it out and compliment. Both the Sherry and Vermouth are dry with the Sherry giving nutty, raisin, briney notes and the Dolin Dry doing that magical thing it does.
  4. Pernod Pastis: last but not least, a bit of Pernod Pastis gives an excellent boost of bright Anise to this boozy drink.

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Express and discard the orange peel, we just want the oil. No distractions in the Temple of Clarity.

Temple of Clarity

  • 2 oz Templeton Rye
  • 1/2 oz Grand Marnier
  • 1/2 oz Lustau Amontillado Sherry
  • 1/2 oz Dolin Dry Vermouth
  • 1 Barspoon Pernod Pastis or Absinthe
  • Garnish: Orange oil, discard peel

Combine ingredients over ice and stirrrrrrrrrrrr. Strain into yer favorite chilled Coupe, express Orange peel and discard.

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Clear, simple, complex, rewarding. Cheers to you in this relaxing moment!

 

La Petite Mort with Plantation Barbados Rum

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In the not too distant past, my girl Foodie Tails texted me saying, “Just got Plantation Barbados 5 and Angostura 7 Rums.” I replied with, “Oh shit!”

Seeing as I had just run out of Angostura 7, and had been meaning to get the Plantation Barbados 5 since I threw that 4th of July Daiquiri Party, I immediately ran to the liquor store. Luckily they had the very bottle I was looking for, so I bought it, ran back home and made the drink described below.

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Now, I LOVE Plantation Rums. They’re aged in used Cognac barrels and meticulously scrutinized for maximum flavour. Well y’all, the flavour is totally there. The Barbados 5 Year Rum has tropical fruits, grasses, a bit of caramel smoothness, leaves a pleasant long finish, and plays well with others.

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It REALLY plays well with the above ingredients.

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In fact, Plantation Barbados 5 Year Rum plays so well with these ingredients that it’s been my new favourite Rum cocktail for at least two weeks.

La Petite Mort

  • 2 oz Plantation Grande Réserve Barbados 5 Year Rum
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • 3/4 oz Honey Syrup*
  • rinse Pernod Pastis
  • Garnish: Pineapple Wedge

Rinse a double Rocks glass with Pernod and chill. Combine remaining ingredients over ice and short shake. Strain into rinsed glass over cracked or crushed ice and garnish.

*This drink is also awesome with Vanilla Bean Syrup subbed for Honey Syrup.

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Damn, so dreamy, so fulfilling, I would die one thousand of these Little Deaths.

#NegroniWeek 2015 – Negroni Blanc

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Welcome to #NegroniWeek 2015! Negroni Week is put on by Campari and Imbibe Magazine as a charity drive for bars and restaurants to participate in. You can find out all about it here.

We’ve done it! We’ve reached the end of Negroni Week! Did you have a good time? Make any good Negroni Variations? Did you totally run out of that Bottled Negroni that we made in a post from May 31st? I totally did.

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If you’ve read this blog for awhile, then you know I love the Negroni Bianco in all its forms. I love sipping them on a sunny Sunday afternoon, while reading a good book, or sneaking one into the park. I love having one in place of a Martini when I want something a little less boozy and a little more flavourful. It seems only fitting that we end #NegroniWeek with this nice soothing variation.

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The Negroni Blanc uses two white Vermouths instead of a Vermouth and a Gentian Liqueur (like Suze or Salers), a bit of Pernod Pastis, and one of my new favourite Gins, Berkshire Mountain Distillers Ethereal Gin Batch 11. I got this fabulous Gin whilst I was on vacation in the Berkshires a couple of weeks ago because it’s a totally awesome Modern American Gin. With notes of cinnamon & allspice in addition to the regular set of Gin botanicals and a viscosity that you can almost sink your teeth into, the BMD Ethereal Gin Batch 11 is perfect for the Negroni Blanc.

Negroni Blanc

  • 1 oz BMD Ethereal Gin Batch 11 (sub Greenhook Dry, Dorothy Parker, Hayman’s Old Tom)
  • 1 oz Dolin Blanc (sub Lillet Blanc)
  • 1 oz Carpano Dry (sub Dolin Dry)
  • 1 dash Pernod Pastis (sub Herbsaint, Pernod Absinthe)
  • Garnish: Lemon Peel

Combine ingredients over ice and stir. Strain into coupe. Express Lemon Peel and garnish.

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Oh, and last night I got new vintage coupes! Beautiful eh? The wonderful people at Adaptations NY are now responsible for around half of my vintage glassware collection. Thanks y’all!

Carpano Dry, my new Best Friend

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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.

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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!

Suspicious Behaviour

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It was 50° F in Brooklyn today, YAAAAAAAS KWEEN. I feel like now that the snow is melting and Daylight Savings time is happening, I’ve got a new lease on life. I feel like a real woman, a woman who can go outside without fear. I also feel like a woman who’d like to drink something with Whiskey, Citrus, Bitter and Pernod on the rocks.

Suspicious Behaviour

  • 2 oz Rye
  • 1/2 oz Averna Amaro
  • 1/4 oz Campari
  • 1/2-3/4 oz Grapefruit Juice (depending on how sweet/bitter)*
  • Pernod Pastis Rinse

Rinse a rocks glass with Pernod Pastis and chill glass. Combine remaining ingredients and stir over ice until proper dilution has been achieved. Strain into rinsed rocks glass with ice. Cheers!

*I know drinks with citrus are usually shaken but I did not want to shake this drink. I wanted the smoothness of a stirred drink not the agitation of a shaken drink.

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Spring is coming! I can feel it in my bones! 

The Oldest Living Confederate Widow

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This drink is possibly the greatest version of a Gin Sour to ever exist. Ever. It’s truly refreshing, so very dangerous and I want to drink them all year round! I got the recipe from Angel Negrín, my mentor in Birmingham, AL who got it from Toby Malone at the Violet Hour in Chicago. It’s a fabulous cocktail and “super healthy” as Angel likes to say. Get ready to shake, shake, boogie!

The Oldest Living Confederate Widow

  • 2 oz Plymouth Gin or Bombay Dry Gin
  • 1 1/4 oz Honey Syrup*
  • 1 oz Lemon Juice
  • 2 dashes of Orange Bitters
  • 2 dashes of Absinthe or Pernod Pastis

In tin, combine ingredients over cracked ice and shake, baby, shake! Strain into coupe. Feel the awesomeness. Try not to take down the whole cocktail in one big gulp, ok?

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*Honey Syrup: I like to make my Honey Syrup in a 1:1 ratio and shake it until the honey has dissolved. I find that if you heat the water and honey, some of the awesomeness in the honey is lost.