Putting Raspberry Syrup to Work: Double ‘R’ Punch

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Alright y’all, it’s the first day of autumn and at this point I have to admit something: no matter what season it is, I want a Tiki drink. Adding to this constant desire is the bottle of Raspberry syrup I made last week, which goes SOOOO well with Rum. So no matter what the weather, as long as you’ve got Raspberry syrup, Orgeat, and Rum, you could really get into this Punch.

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The thing about Raspberry syrup is that it can totally be used in place of Grenadine. I was reading through tons of recipes from the Prohibition era and there was actually a high number of instances where Raspberry syrup was called for or used as a Grenadine sub. The other thing I found interesting was that almost all of these recipes used Brandy or Rum as the base spirit.

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Hell yeah. Rum. Rummmmmmmmmmm. I’m starting to think that my brain is automatically like, “but how can I put ingredient ‘x’ with Rum?”

And note my new (vintage) Planter’s Punch glass! Isn’t it cute? So cute! And appropriate since I am using Jamaican Rum in this recipe! (Thank you Denizen Merchant’s Reserve!)

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I think the process went something like this:

  1. I was like “Ok, the Raspberry syrup is both sweet and tart and goes well with Lemon & Lime, so lets start there.”
  2. Then I wanted Orgeat to help smoooooth things out cause there was a lot of acid happening with the juices + syrup.
  3. But then I wanted anise so I thought Absinthe + Peychaud’s for extra spices and depth
  4. Finally the Rums: Plantation Barbados 5 for smoothness, Denizen Merchant’s Reserve for the funk to dry the drink out a bit.

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…Mint for aroma and cause it’s so pretty with the red color of the drink. Same reason for using a Blue umbrella: colors are important when creating drinks! It’s like you’ve made a tiny, albeit temporary work of art!

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Double ‘R’ Punch

  • 1 1/2 oz Plantation Barbados 5 Year Rum (Sub a smooth, aged Rum)
  • 3/4 oz Denizen Merchant’s Reserve 8 Year Rum (Sub Jamaican Rum)
  • 1/2 oz Raspberry Simple Syrup
  • 1/4-1/2 oz Orgeat*
  • 1/2 oz fresh Lime Juice
  • 1/4 oz fresh Lemon Juice
  • 2 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
  • 8 drops St. George Absinthe Verte
  • Garnish: Mint sprig, Tiki Umbrella

Combine ingredients over ice and shake. Double strain into Planter’s Punch glass or Collins glass over crushed ice and garnish.

*Totally depends on your Orgeat. I’m using homemade Orgeat and it’s not as sweet as something like B.G. Reynolds Orgeat. I’d recommend starting with 1/4 oz, taste the drink, then add more if needed.

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This photo is really making me wanna escape to a tropical place…like right meow.

Cheers and have tons of fun with your Raspberry Syrup drinks!

Tequila & Tiki: the Jalajaja Swizzle

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Happy September Monday to y’all! Hopefully things are starting to cool down for you, but if you’re living anywhere in the USA, I highly doubt it. It’s been super hot here in Brooklyn and I have it on good authority that it’s still pretty hot in SoCal and Texas too.

Not that heat = Tiki cause y’all know how I luv to Tiki The Snow Away, but nevertheless, I need a tall-icy-fruity-Rum-filled….wait, what?

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Bwahahaha! It’s not Rum, it’s Tequila! Today’s drink came about cause I really wanted to make a Tequila Tiki drink and I thought the Swizzle would be a good format. I was thinking Corralejo Reposado Tequila but then I was also thinking it’s pepper season and I remembered that this Tequila is really snappy when infused with Jalapeño (or Serrano, Serrano is super tasty too).

Go here for the Jalapeño infused Corralejo Reposado recipe.

I apparently couldn’t live without some version of Rum, so I added my new fave ingredient, Kalani Coconut Rum Liqueur. This stuff is maaaaad tasty: grassy (like a mild agricole), has some notes of chocolate, caramel, and citrus in addition to the obvious Coconut. Kalani is made with 100% Natural Mayan Coconut Rum, has a silky viscosity, a good level of sweetness, and (just like my bottle of Tequila) is from Mexico.

Sooooooo, maybe I really just wanted to make a Mexican Swizzle, mmmmhm. #MexicanPride

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The spice and juice set came about cause:

  1. Grapefruit and Tequila are best friends.
  2. Lime juice for more tartness and length.
  3. Honey cause I knew it would be a match made in heaven.
  4. Peychaud’s Bitters for anise and some interesting depth.

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Grab either yer swizzle stick or a long barspoon for this one.

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Oh and like spanish speakers do, pronounce the J’s in this drink “ha-ha-ha”, then it basically sounds like you’re laughing and will make you feel pumped to try this drink!

Jalajaja Swizzle 

  • 2 1/2 oz Jalapeño infused Corralejo Reposado Tequila
  • 1/2 oz Kalani Coconut Rum Liqueur
  • 1 oz White Grapefruit Juice
  • 1/2 oz Lime Juice
  • 1/2-3/4 oz Honey Syrup*
  • 2 dashes Peychaud’s
  • Garnish: candied Ginger, Mint sprig

Add ingredients to large Tiki mug, add cracked or crushed ice and swizzle til the glass has started to frost and everything seems to have combined. Add a lil more ice on top if needed and garnish.

*Depends on how sweet you want it. I tried it both ways and was honestly not sure which one I liked better.

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Salud and may your Tequila Tiki experiments be awesome!

Drinking with Mad Men Season 7: the Manhattan

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To celebrate “The End of An Era”, welcome to a series of drinks from the television show Mad Men. Each week I’ll be featuring a different cocktail from the show, so we can all drink along with our favourite Madison Avenue Ad-men and women.

As previously stated, I’m a bit of a Mad Men fanatic. The characters and their struggles have gripped my soul. The fashion is so on point. The cocktails are so classic and powerful.

Yes, powerful. This week for S7E9, I’ll be drinking perhaps the most “powerful” cocktail of all time, The Manhattan. There is literally nothing more powerful than ordering what Gary Regan once called, “The King of Cocktails.” Manhattans make you feel like a supreme being, a conqueror of worlds, a leader of vast armies.

Tradition has it that the Manhattan was originally made with American Whiskey, which in the 1860s meant Rye. Some recipes call for Canadian Whiskey, Bourbon, or even Brandy (I’m looking at you Wisconsin) but they always call for Whiskey, Sweet Vermouth and Bitters.

Peggy Drinks a Manhattan

In S4E7 “The Suitcase”, Peggy and her boyfriend Mark break up after Don forces her to work late into the night on her birthday. She vents her frustration to Don and tells him that she and Mark have split. Don and Peggy leave the office, go to a shitty diner and then end up at a bar. Don, always Old Fashioned in hand, chats with Peggy about how attractive Peggy is and cheers her up about her chances with men. Peggy slowly sips her Manhattan, savoring every moment.

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Manhattans are usually made in a 2:1 ratio of Whiskey to Sweet Vermouth with a couple of dashes of Bitters thrown in and a Maraschino Cherry as garnish. Here in New York City 2015, the recipe is frequently made as follows:

Manhattan

  • 2 oz Rye Whiskey (Rittenhouse is the fave)
  • 1 oz Sweet Vermouth (Carpano Antica Vermouth or Cocchi Vermouth di Tornio are the faves)
  • 2 dashes of Angostura Bitters
  • 2 dashes of Regan’s Orange Bitters
  • Garnish: Maraschino Cherry

Combine Ingredients over ice and stir until proper dilution has been achieved. Strain into coupe and garnish with Maraschino Cherry.

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An excellent Manhattan Variation is made by using equal parts Sweet Vermouth and Dry Vermouth with a couple of dashes of bitters. This is called a Perfect Manhattan. In my opinion, this tends to work better if you use Vermouths of the same house. i.e. Dolin Rouge & Dolin Dry, Noilly Prat Rouge & Noilly Prat Dry, Carpano Antica & Carpano Dry.

Perfect Manhattan

  • 2 oz Rittenhouse Rye
  • 1/2 oz Carpano Antica Sweet Vermouth
  • 1/2 oz Carpano Dry Vermouth
  • 2 dashes of Angostura Bitters
  • 2 dashes of Orange Bitters
  • Garnish: Maraschino Cherry

Combine Ingredients over ice and stir until proper dilution has been achieved. Strain into coupe and garnish with Maraschino Cherry.

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In what is perhaps my favourite Manhattan Variation, add Celery Bitters into the mix. The Fourth Regiment recipe was first published in The Hotel Monthly by Jacques Straub in 1914. I had one for the first time a few years ago at Dutch Kills in Long Island City and never looked back! The original recipe calls for the drink to be shaken, equal parts Rye & Sweet Vermouth and one dash each of the bitters. There is no garnish specification but I love to use an Orange peel.

Fourth Regiment

  • 1 1/2 oz Rye (Rittenhouse or bust!)
  • 1 1/2 oz Sweet Vermouth (Carpano Antica!)
  • 1 dash Angostura Bitters
  • 1 dash Regan’s Orange Bitters
  • 1 dash Scrappy’s Celery Bitters
  • Garnish: Orange peel

Combine Ingredients over ice and stir until proper dilution has been achieved. Strain into coupe, express Orange peel and garnish.

Manhattan-Ingredients

Now when it comes to making your own Manhattan, use whichever Bitters, Vermouths, garnishes and Whiskey you have on hand. Feel free to experiment and combine different ingredients together. If you have Maraschino Liqueur, an Amaro or Absinthe on hand, add a dash or two of that! Always keep in mind to start in small amounts and measure everything!

I’ll be doing this series until the end of Mad Men, so see you next week!

Thanks again to The Baddish Group for the fantastic bottles of Carpano Antica & Carpano Dry.

Boots & Flannel

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It’s Friday, it’s Wintry out and it’s time for Boots & Flannel. Winter Uniform is here y’all: I’ve been wearing some J. Crew lady flannel and Mono black Dr. Martens 1460s with black Jeggings. I feel cozy and ready for this chilly weather.

I was in debate about which bitters to use and nearly went with Orange bitters. However, Peychaud’s works really well here because it adds another level of flavour to this cocktail. Also, you can’t stop the Santa Maria. It cannot be stopped! It won’t let me stop! I’ve been taken over by Santa Maria!

Boots & Flannel

  • 1 1/2 oz Rye
  • 3/4 oz Santa Maria al Monte Amaro
  • 3/4 oz Carpano Antica
  • 1/4 oz Cinnamon Bark Syrup
  • 1 dash Peychaud’s Bitters
  • Orange peel
  • Freshly grated Nutmeg

In tin, combine Rye, Amaro, Carpano, Cinnamon bark Syrup and Peychaud’s over ice and stirrrrrr. Strain into Rocks glass over ice. Garnish with freshly grated Nutmeg and Orange peel.

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Brunch Bonanza: King Snake Flip

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Welcome to Brunch Bonanza. The segment where we talk about brunch cocktails!

First off, let me say, I will take ANY excuse to have an egg drink. I looooove egg drinks. They are smooth, nutritious, creamy and delectable. They are also pretty dangerous, meaning that I want to drink several of them in a row.

There’s a long history to flips and egg drinks, even dating back to Harry Johnson’s Bartender’s Manual in 1882. If you get the chance, read it. Just the section about how to set up the bar and make customers feel welcome is inspirational. This particular cocktail is my variation on the Rattlesnake Cocktail from the Savoy Cocktail Book.

King Snake

  • 2 oz Gin
  • 3/4 oz Lemon Juice
  • 3/4 oz Simple Syrup
  • Pernod Rinse
  • Whole Egg
  • Peychaud’s Bitters

Rinse coupe with Pernod and chill glass. In tin, combine Gin, Lemon Juice, Simple Syrup and Egg. Shake the shit out of it for around 20 seconds or until egg has emulsified (this is called a Dry Shake). Add cracked ice and shake again vigorously. Double strain into coupe. Drop a few drops of Peychaud’s Bitters on top of the beautiful egg foam and swirl them around with a toothpick.

Enjoy and Happy Brunching to you all!