Mother’s Day with NOLET’S Gin

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Happy almost-Mother’s Day y’all!

Isn’t “mother” a funny word? Your mother, my mother, every mother! Mother… mother, mother. Mother may I? Ya mutha’. I feel like the more I say it, the stranger it sounds. I actually call my mother “Mamoo” which is sort of like Mom +Mam-e (another nickname for her) + “Faboo!” (Animaniacs). I also call my Mother “Hun” or “Dear Hun” and she calls me the same.

My Mamoo is a fabulous lady who likes the finer things in life, so I wanted to celebrate Mother’s Day with the fanciest Gin on earth: NOLET’S Silver Dry Gin.

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NOLET’S Gin is one of the most delicious and unique Gins I’ve ever tasted. It has prominent notes of Turkish Rose, Raspberry, Peach, and Lemon sherbet, along with the usual Gin botanicals. The viscosity is excellent (to die for in a Martini), it’s 92.5 proof, and when you sip it, this Gin straight up makes you feel elegant.

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Now that we’ve got a glorious Gin, let’s make our mothers a celebratory cocktail or three, shall we?

We’ll start with one based on an Aperol Fizz but with a bit more booze and lots of fruit. Mamoo likes strawberries and oranges, so I’ve thrown those into the mix.

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I’ve named this drink for my Dear Hun and these are her initials.

SJ Fizz

  • 1 oz NOLET’S Silver Dry Gin
  • 1 oz Aperol
  • Chilled, dry sparkling Rosé like Cava Rosat or Rosé Brut
  • Garnish: Strawberries, *Cara Cara Orange Wedges, Mint Bouquet

Build in glass: add fruit and a couple of ice cubes to a wine glass. Add NOLET’S Gin, Aperol and gently stir til things are swimming along nicely. Top with sparkling Rosé and garnish with a Mint Bouquet.

*Note: I’m obsessed with Cara Cara Oranges. They are so much more pleasant than regular Naval oranges, have floral & berry notes, and are less acidic tasting.

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For this next one, keep that bottle of sparkling Rosé handy cause we’re going to make a French 75 variation. NOLET’S Gin is from the Netherlands, so I’ve named the cocktail accordingly. The number I’ve chosen may or may not have to do with a certain Mamoo’s age…I’ll never tell.

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We’re also going to make a pretty pretty princess Citrus peel rose garnish. Grab one Lemon, one Red Grapefruit, a peeler and a cocktail pick. Peel a strip from each fruit, trying to make your peels about the same length. Roll them together into a rose and spear with the pick.

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Nice right? A rose for ya mutha’ and to compliment the rose notes in the Gin. SYNERGY!

Dutch 65

  • 1 oz NOLET’S Silver Dry Gin
  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice
  • 1/4 oz Rich Cane Sugar Syrup
  • Chilled, dry sparkling Rosé like Cava Rosat or Rosé Brut
  • Garnish: Grapefruit & Lemon peel rose

Combine NOLET’S Gin, Lemon juice, and syrup over ice and stir. Strain into your prettiest coupe or champagne flute. Top with sparkling Rosé and garnish with Citrus rose.

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Lastly, we’re going to make a variation on a Pimm’s Cup cause what mother doesn’t love Pimm’s? (Every mother loves Pimm’s, she just doesn’t know it yet.)

To make the cucumber garnish, you’ll need to cut the cucumber into long spears, get a zester/channel knife, and score the cucumber.

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My mom’s family name is Maddox, hence the name of the cocktail.

Maddox Cup

  • 1 oz NOLET’S Silver Dry Gin
  • 1 oz Pimm’s No.1
  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice
  • 1/4 oz Rich Cane Sugar Syrup
  • Club Soda
  • Garnishes: Strawberries, Cara Cara Orange wedges, scored Cucumber spear, Mint Bouquet

Build in glass: place cucumber spear in glass, then layer fruit and ice. Add NOLET’S Gin, Pimm’s, Lemon Juice, Syrup, soda and stir gently. Top with Mint Bouquet

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Man, that cucumber garnish is really speaking to me. So fresh, so healthy! Your mother would be proud of you for eating your veggies!

Happy Mother’s Day to all of your Moms! May they have the fanciest day ever. Cheers!

 

 

On Holiday in the SF Bay Area

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Hi y’all! I’ve been on holiday/visiting my Dad in the San Francisco Bay Area and woooooooah, I am having the best time! As you all probably know by now, I’m from Marin County which is north of San Francisco, so any chance I get to come back home is a chance I will take.

I’ve been posting most of my adventures on Instagram (including a lot of Dramatic Landscape Photos) and thought I would share a couple of highlights here on Home Bar Girl.

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Part of my Dad’s Wine collection and most of his amazing Record collection. There are loads of first edition Rock albums in here. Priorities are definitely straight!

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And speaking of Wine, I’ve been drinking tons of Wine since I got here but this Bodkin Sparkling Sauvignon Blanc? OH MY GOOOOOOOD! Possibly the most exciting thing I’ve tasted in a long time! POSSIBLY? NO! TOTALLY! Notes of Celery, Green Apple, Citrus and other magical goodness + bubbles. Can’t handle it!

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On Saturday, I did break my Wine Only streak and hit up a couple of places in the City (we Bay Area people refer to SF as “the City”), starting with Tacoliscious. They make literally the greatest Carnitas Tacos I’ve ever had, delicious Tequila cocktails like this one made with Blanco Tequila, Canteloupe, Lemon Grass (!!!!!), and salsa with MINT!

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It was to die for!

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Then a couple of friends and I booped over to Smuggler’s Cove because RUM BABY YEAH! It’s like if you went to a Pirate ship at Disneyland but then was somehow more adult + loads of Rum! Pictured here is their Three Dots and a Dash and it was deeeeeeeelicious.

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This morning my Dad and I went to have lunch at Assemble in the Marina area of Richmond. Well, literally next door to us was a Rally show full of German cars modded out for racing! I love cars so for me it was totally awesome!

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During lunch I had a lovely Rosé Brut. Yes Way Bay Area Rosé!

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After all of that, I hopped on BART (which is waaaay more chill than the NYC Subway, btw) and strolled over to Lake Merritt in Oakland. Yes, this is the photo from the top of the post, but I thought we should look at it again. Soooo pretty.

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Then I headed off towards Boot & Shoe Service, my fave spot in Oakland but was deterred by Alchemy Bottle Shop, the most beautiful shop in all the land. Look at this organization! Look at the bottles!

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Well, sadly I was thwarted because Boot & Shoe Service closes from 2-5pm on Sundays to prep for dinner. HOWEVER, I kept walking east and came upon a magnificent Wine Bar called Ordinaire. I’ve been on a Dry French Red kick for awhile now (years actually) and the Wine Dude recommended a Languedoc by Julien Peyras. Holy cow, the nose was super briney, but then fruits exploded, followed by herbes and DIRT! I LOVED IT! I also got this magnificent cheese plate with the best Cow/Goat combo from Vermonty and some other tasty business.

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Ahhhhh, the Bay Area. So charming, so dramatic, so wonderful.

On Holiday in the Berkshires: a Photo Essay

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A couple of weeks ago my girlfriend and I, aka The Two Ladies™ went to the Berkshires for a short holiday. This is what we saw.

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We stayed at the Red Lion Inn, originally built in 1773 and stuffed to the gills with antiques.

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The king of the Red Lion Inn is Simon the Cat. He was sooooo snuggly.

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We hiked Monument Mountain, the first quartzite mountain I’ve ever climbed.

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The Mount Grounds

We went to Edith Wharton’s fabulous Gilded Age Mansion, The Mount.

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The Mount Edith Wharton Bedroom

Apparently Edith Wharton wrote every day in this bed from 6am-11am and then got up to deal with the rest of her life. YASSSS KWEEN EDITH.

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The whole place was stunning. This place setting is to die for.

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We ate a lot of delicious food. In fact, I would 100% say that the best New American cuisine in the USA is in the Berkshires and the best New American restaurant in the USA, nay on earth, is Prairie Whale in Great Barrington.

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We loved the food so much that we ate there three times in five days.

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Of course we got drinks at the Prairie Whale. These were both made with Berkshire Mountain Distillers Gin. On the left was Ethereal Gin Batch 11, Lavender Syrup, Lemon, Peychaud’s, Anise Hyssop garnish. On the right was Greylock Gin, Grapefruit Juice, agave, salt, lime wedge.

Prairie Whale Bloody Mary

The best Bloody Mary ever, made with Berkshire Mountain Distillers Greylock Gin.

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Perhaps what struck me the most about Prairie Whale was that nearly everything in the restaurant came from the Prairie Whale farm or other local farmers. I know “Farm to Table” is super trondy right now but these people are doing it right! Seen above is an Anise Hyssop leaf which was grown in the garden right outside the restaurant. It was the garnish in almost every cocktail they offer because Anise Hyssop is what seasonally grows during late springtime in the Berkshires. It smells fabulous too! Like something between Anise, Mint, and Lemon Balm. Perfection.

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We drank a lot of Rosé.

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And I had a Martini made with Berkshire Mountain Distillers Ethereal Gin Batch 11. Pursed lips gurrrrrrl.

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So then of course we went to Berkshire Mountain Distillers, tasted some Gin, smelled some Gin, bought some Gin. Their Ethereal Gins are a limited time series which are reworked every year with different botanicals. They’re all incredible. I bought the Red Label and Pink Label (Batches 9 & 11) and had to force myself not to buy the one in the middle.

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They also have a bottle of Rye from 1898.

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But the main thing we noticed about the Berkshires is that EVERYTHING is just right. I’ve never seen this much attention to detail, care for the earth, or sense of terroir in any place I’ve ever been to in the USA. (Yes, I’m looking at you Napa Valley!) It’s truly impressive and a totally fabulous place to go on holiday. We are actually planning to back as soon as we possibly can just to eat one more meal at Prairie Whale.

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Cheers!

All photos shot by the Two Ladies™ on iPhone 5S  & iPhone 6 and edited in VSCO Cam. 

#NegroniWeek 2015 – Negroni Rosé

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Welcome to #NegroniWeek 2015! The week where we literally cannot drink anything other than a Negroni! (Jkjkjkjk) 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.

Now, if you haven’t read my post from May 31st about how I like to make and Bottle my Negroni, you should do that first, and then come back here. Did you read it? Word. Did you not? Ummmmmmm.

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Repeat after me, “Bottled Negroni is my best friend.” 

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Obsession comes in many colours, this time it’s in a light shade of pink. 

This fabulous Negroni variation was born from my love of Dry French Rosé. Pictured above is Saint Roch Rose Touraine, a very dry, lightly fruity (strawberries, citrus), and botanical Rosé from the Loire Valley. (Clearly I love this Rosé as I am nearly out of it.) Saint Roch Rose Touraine also pairs perfectly with Negroni, so that’s a glorious thing.

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The reason I’m suggesting a dry Rosé is that the Negroni is a bitterSWEET drink, emphasis on the sweet. If you used a sweet Rosé, well then you might have the sweetest drink on earth and that would be no good. Nope.

Negroni Rosé

  • 2 1/2 oz Bottled Negroni
  • 1 1/2 oz Saint Roch Rose Touraine (or any dry French Rosé, bonus points for sparkling)
  • Garnish: Red Grapefruit wedge

Combine ingredients over ice and give it a long stir. Strain into coupe and garnish.

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This is one of those drinks that takes you somewhere and it’s taking me right to the Mediterranean. Cheers to THAT!