February 25, 2012

High Kick

For some reason I have both Aperol and vanilla vodka in my liquor cabinet - the Aperol after a brief flirt with Aperol Spritz this summer - I like Campari so much better - and the vanilla vodka after a brief flirt years ago with vanilla vodka and cranberry juice - then I grew up.

Much to my surprise I stumbled across a cocktail this afternoon containing both of these ingredients and I gave it a shot. It has been developed by Camper English who writes a very nice blog:
  • 4.5 cl Absolute Vanilla
  • 2 cl Aperol
  • 2 cl fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cl simple syrup
  • 6 mint leaves
Pour everything in a cocktail shaker with ice, add the mint and shake for a good minute. Strain into chilled cocktail coupe and garnish with a mostarda cherry and a sprig of mint.

February 11, 2012

Amaretto Sour

It's fun to mix cocktails or cook food you have no history with. In other words drink or food where you have no idea how it is supposed to taste.

Amaretto Sour seems to be a cocktail that people have a history with - something sweet, bland nonthreatening served to people who really don't enjoy strong cocktails.

But then Jeffrey Morgenthaler spiced it - and spiked it - up. And he sold me with the claim that he makes the worlds best.

So promptly at 9 a.m. I stood in front of my booze seller as a somewhat tired employee opened the door to let the first customer in.

I went straight for the orange Curacao shelf, where I picked out a bottle of liquid gold: Pierre Ferrand Dry Curaçao Ancienne Méthode.

I tried it last night at an amazing seminar i the fine baroque manor Moltkes Palæ in Copenhagen in a Brandy Cocktail - well a Cognac Cocktail because it's base spirit was Pierre Ferrand 1840 Cognac.

And then I pointed at a middle of the road Amaretto and was promptly chastised: If you go for the best in Curacao, then why not for the best in Amaretto? And then he sold me a bottle of Zuidam Amaretto. So he might have looked tired but he was a good salesman.

So tonight I mixed a Amaretto Sour, inspired by Morgenthaler:
  • 4,5 cl Amaretto
  • 2 cl whisky - I used Dalwhinnie
  • 3 cl fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • 1 egg white
Put everything in a cocktail shaker but don't add any ice yet. Dry shake for a minute then add ice and shake for another 2 minutes.

Strain in to cocktail coupe over fresh ice and garnish with a lemon twist and an Amarena cherry.

February 7, 2012

Weeping Ukulele

What is a gin hound to do when the theme for the next Mixology Monday hosted by the Pegu Blog is TIKI?

Well I could lie down and weep or be bold. I choose the latter.

Two things inspired me: A wonderful Danish cherry wine and my first batch of syrup for home made tonic water, made by pretty much following Jeffrey Morgenthaler's recipe, but with a few changes described here.
  • 6 cl (2 oz) Appleton Estate V/X rum
  • 2 cl (3/4 oz) Picon
  • 2 cl (3/4 oz) Frederiksdal cherry wine (Cheery Heering would work, but then only half as much)
  • 1 cl (2 teaspoons or 3/8 oz) Campari
  • 2 cl (3/4 oz) fresh blood orange juice
  • 1 cl (2 teaspoons or 3/8 oz) tonic syrup (or 4 cl (2 3/4 oz) tonic water)
  • 3 cl seltzers (not if tonic water is used)
  • Dash of Bitter Truth Xoxolatl Mole chocolate bitters

If using tonic syrup, shake first 6 ingredients with lots of crushed ice. Pour into generous glass, add the seltzers and the dash of bitters and garnish with a slice of fresh pineapple and couple of maraschino cherries and umbrella.

If using tonic water just shake the first five ingredients and then add tonic water, bitters and garnish.

Enjoy - or weep!

February 4, 2012

Gin and Homemade Tonic

It's a bit insulting to try to tell people how to mix a gin and tonic, right? And is it even a cocktail?

The answers to those two questions must be yes and no.

Strictly speaking a G&T is not a cocktail, unless you make your own tonic water, then it very clearly is, as both something bitter and sugar is present in the process.

I followed a recipe by Jeffrey Morgenthaler - not to the letter, I added bitter orange peel and bitter orange juice as well as dry bitter orange peel. And I sweetened it with a mixture of white sugar, honey and maple syrup.

The greatest challenge was to get a hold of the china bark, but once that was secure it takes less than an hour to make the equivalent of 3 liters of tonic water at a fraction of the cost of designer tonic water like Fentimans, Q tonic and Fever Tree.

  • 2 cl home made tonic sirup
  • 4 cl gin
  • 6 cl seltzers

Stir everything with ice and garnish with a slice of lime or lemon as you please.